Ph.D., Bryn Mawr College (1968)

M.A., Villanova University (1964)

B.A., LaSalle University (1962)

John D. Caputo

Thomas J. Watson Professor of Religion Emeritus, Syracuse University

David R. Cook Professor of Philosophy Emeritus, Villanova University

John D. Caputo is a hybrid philosopher/theologian who works in the area of radical theology. Prof. Caputo has spearheaded a notion he calls “weak theology,” by which he means a “poetics” of the “event” that is harbored in the name (of) God, or that “insists” in the name (of) “God,” a notion that depends upon a reworking of the notions of event in Derrida to theological ends. In his majors works he has argued that interpretation goes all the way down (Radical Hermeneutics, 1987), that Derrida is a thinker to be reckoned with by theology (The Prayers and Tears of Jacques Derrida, 1997), that theology is best served by getting over its love affair with power and authority and embracing what Caputo calls, taking a phrase from St. Paul, The Weakness of God: A Theology of the Event (2006), which won the American Academy of Religion award for excellence in the category of constructive theology.

In The Insistence of God: A Theology of Perhaps (2013), Caputo argues that God does not exist, God insists, and that God’s existence depends upon us. He has also a special interest in addressing more general audiences, which can be seen in books like On Religion (1971), What Would Jesus Deconstruct? (2006), Philosophy and Theology, and Truth (2013), which is part of the Penguin Books “Philosophy in Transit” series celebrating the 150th anniversary of the London Underground. Since retiring in 2011, he has been speaking to various church and community groups interested in a more progressive concept of religion.

Books

The Folly of God: A Theology of the Unconditional, God and the Human Future Series, 2016

Hoping Against Hope: Confessions of a Postmodern Pilgrim, 2015

It Spooks: Living in response to an unheard call, coauthored with Katharine Sarah Moody, 2015

The Insistence of God: A Theology of Perhaps, Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Religion, 2014

How to Read Kierkegaard, 2014

Truth: Philosophy in Transit, 2014

For a Church to Come: Experiments in Postmodern Theory and Anabaptist Thought, 2013

Philosophy and Theology, Horizons in Theology Series, 2011

Feminism, Sexuality, and the Return of Religion, co-edited with Linda Martin Alcoff, Indiana Series on the Philosophy of Religion, 2011

After the Death of God, coauthored with Gianni Vattimo, Insurrections: Critical Studies in Religion, Politics, and Culture, 2010

St. Paul among the Philosophers, co-edited with Linda Martin Alcoff, Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Religion, 2009

What Would Jesus Deconstruct? The Church and Postmodern Culture Series, 2007

Transcendence and Beyond: A Postmodern Inquiry, co-edited with Michael J. Scanlon, Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Religion, 2007

The Weakness of God: A Theology of the Event, Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Religion, 2006. Winner, American Academy of Religion Book Award for Excellence in Studies in Religion.

Foucault and the Critique of Institutions, co-edited with Mark Yount, Studies of the Greater Philadelphia Philosophy Consortium, 2006

Augustine and Postmodernism: Confessions and Circumfession, co-edited with Michael J. Scanlon, Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Religion, 2005

editor, The Religious, Blackwell Readings in Continental Philosophy, 2001

God, the Gift, and Postmodernism, co-edited with Michael J. Scanlon, Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Religion, 1999

The Prayers and Tears of Jacques Derrida: Religion without Religion, Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Religion, 1997

Academic Appointments

Thomas J. Watson Professor of Religion and Humanities, Syracuse University, 2004 – present

David R. Cook Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, Villanova University, 2004 – present

David R. Cook Professor of Philosophy, Villanova University, 1968–2004

Visiting Professor, New School for Social Research, Spring, 1994

Distinguished Adjunct Professor, Fordham University Graduate Program, 1985–88

Visiting Professor, Fordham University, Fall, 1980

Visiting Professor, Duquesne University, Fall, 1978

Instructor, St. Joseph's University, Philadelphia, 1965–68