Ramism and the Reformation of Method: The Franciscan Legacy in Early Modernity

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract / Description of output

Ramism and the Reformation of Method offers a fresh exploration of the philosophical and theological presuppositions of the early modern movement of Ramism. It shows how Ramism was grounded in medieval Augustinian and Franciscan thought and charts its reception within the wider movement of Reformed scholasticism. It thereby challenges a widespread narrative associating Reformed Protestantism with disenchantment and the onset of secularism. Tracing a broad arc from Ramus to Comenius, it examines the nature and formation of Ramism and its subsequent development and transformation, revealing that Ramism was at the epicentre of a methodological revolution which came to profoundly impact every sphere of early modern thought.

For its devotees, Ramism became the hallmark of a truly Christian philosophy and theology, the divine pattern of all reality, and the key to restoring a unified Christendom. Fundamental to Ramism was a dynamic convergence of ontology, epistemology, and theology resonating with Franciscan reform. In particular, Ramism was profoundly indebted to an eclectic Neo-Platonist and Scotist approach to reality and developed as a supernatural logic of faith patterned on Scripture. It was also expressed according to a wider mathematization and systematization of knowledge grounded in Cusan and Fabrist ideals. Ramism and the Reformation of Method exposes the deep roots of the early modern encyclopaedia in medieval and Renaissance thought and shows how Ramism was realized in an important Edenic paradigm, issuing in a Trinitarian and eschatological drive for the universal reform of Church and society.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages456
ISBN (Print)9780197516355
Publication statusPublished - 23 Apr 2024

Publication series

NameOxford Studies in Historical Theology
PublisherOxford University Press


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