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Volume 13, Issue Supplement, 2015

Dualismes: Doctrines religieuses et traditions philosophiques

Isabelle Koch
Pages 491-515

Augustin : d’un dualisme a un autre ?

Augustine is a particularly interesting author for anyone who wishes to question the topic of dualism, because of the diverse and complex way this topic is adressed in his writings. After having been listening to the Manichean as an “auditor” for almost ten years, he raised many critics against the manichean thesis ; but in spite of this critical position, several of his later opponents, from the Donatist and mostly from the Pelagian heresy, often reproached him to have remained a crypto‑Manichean. This paper focuses on working out the original image Augustine had about the manicheism, as providing a coherent answer to some ethical and metaphysical problems, then as being nothing more than a false response he had to break with. This task will then lead us to question his potential residual manicheism, considering his controversy with Julian of Eclanum, in order to identify the arguments by which Julian supports the accusation of augustinian Manicheism, and to assess the extent to which this accusation is or is not admissible.

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