Fortress Press

Ethics: Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, Volume 6

Ethics: Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, Volume 6

Ethics: Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, Volume 6

The crown jewel of Bonhoeffer's body of work, Ethics is the culmination of his theological and personal odyssey. Based on careful reconstruction of the manuscripts, freshly and expertly translated and annotated, this new critical edition features an insightful Introduction by Clifford Green and an Afterword from the German edition's editors.

Though caught up in the vortex of momentous forces in the Nazi period, Bonhoeffer systematically envisioned a radically Christocentric, incarnational ethic for a post-war world, purposefully recasting Christians' relation to history, politics, and public life.

This edition allows scholars, theologians, ethicists, and serious Christians to appreciate the cogency and relevance of Bonhoeffer's vision.

ISBN: 9780800683269
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ISBN: 9780800683061
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ISBN: 9781451406757
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    General Editor's Foreword to Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works
    Editor's Introduction to the English Edition, Clifford J. Green



    Christ, Reality, and Good. Christ, Church, and World
    Ethics as Formation
    Heritage and Decay
    Guilt, Justification, Renewal
    Ultimate and Penultimate Things

    Natural Life

    Natural Life
    Suum Cuique
    The Right to Bodily Life
    Reproduction and Developing Life
    The Freedom of Bodily Life
    The Natural Rights of the Life of the Spirit
    History and Good (1)

    History and Good (2)
    The Structure of Responsible Life
    The Place of Responsibility
    Love and Responsibility

    God's Love and the Disintegration of the World

    Church and World I

    On the Possibility of the Church's Message to the World

    The "Ethical" and the "Christian" as a Topic

    The Concrete Commandment and the Divine Mandates

    The Commandment of God in the Church

    Editor's Afterword to the German Edition
    Ilse Tödt, Heinz Eduard Tödt†, Ernst Feil, and Clifford Green

    1. Chronology of Ethics
    2. Preparing the German Edition of Ethics, Ilse Tödt
    3. Arrangements of Ethics
    4. Facsimile Pages, "Heritage and Decay"

    1. Literature Used by Bonhoeffer
    2. Literature Consulted by the Editors
    3. Other Literature Related to Ethics

    Index of Scriptural References
    Index of Names
    Index of Subjects

    Editors and Translators


"Bonhoefer's Ethics is one of the greatest works of twentieth-century theology, gripping in its capacity to go to the heart of living the Christian life, rich in generative concepts, and still powerfully relevant. This new translation of the authoritative German edition does full justice to a classic text, reads very well, and is superbly edited."
— David Ford, University of Cambridge

"All students of Bonhoeffer will relish this new translation and expanded edition of his indispensable Ethics. Not only does this edition of the Ethics continue the superb scholarly production of Bonhoeffer's works, but it also contains a wonderful Introduction and Afterword by the editors that helps clarify how the Ethics stands in continuity with Bonhoeffer's earlier work. Anyone interested in Bonhoeffer must own this volume. But just as important, anyone interested in continuing to think through what a Christian ethic is and how it should be done needs to read this book."
— Stanley Hauerwas, Duke University Divinity School

"This new critical edition of Bonhoeffer's Ethics is a masterful achievement. Based on a more accurate German text painstakingly reconstructed and rearranged, with extensive introductions, commentary notes and bibliography, the translation is fresh and highly readable. Ethics is the key to understanding Bonhoeffer's theology as it unfolded towards the end of the Third Reich, and especially the key for understanding his involvement in the German resistance. Though never completed, it is one of the most significant and influential of all Christian theological ethics produced in the twentieth century. Many have waited with great anticipation for this new edition of the Ethics. None, I venture, will be disappointed."
— John W. de Gruchy, University of Cape Town

"The book that Bonhoeffer considered his most important theological work is now available in a form that makes its meaning and its context clear to English-speaking readers. While Bonhoeffer was deeply engaged with the problems of Christian life in Hitler's Germany, he anticipated our world in remarkable ways. The new translation, notes, and essays clarify Bonhoeffer's ideas about his own situation and remind us again why his work is still central to the constructive task of Christian ethics today."
— Robin W. Lovin, Southern Methodist University