Charles Winquist

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Charles Winquist (1944 – April 4, 2002) was the Thomas J. Watson Professor of Religion at Syracuse University. He is known for his writings on theology and contemporary continental philosophy.


Winquist received his B.A. in philosophy from the University of Toledo (1965), his M.A. in philosophy from the University of Chicago (1968), and his Ph.D. in philosophical theology from the University of Chicago (1970).


Winquist's work is tactical as well as theoretical, showing what kind of work theology can do in contemporary society. He suggests that theology is closely akin to what Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari refer to as a minor intensive use of a major language. The minor intensive theological use of language, Winquist argues, pressures the ordinary weave of discourse and opens it to desire. Thus theology becomes a work against "the disappointment of thinking."

Winquist was an early proponent of weak theology and was deeply engaged with the works of Friedrich Nietzsche, Jacques Derrida, Paul Tillich, and Mark C. Taylor, among others.

Positions held[edit]

Winquist was professionally active at the national level. He held several offices in the American Academy of Religion, including the office of executive director.


  • (1972) The Transcendental Imagination
  • (1975) Communion of Possibility
  • (1978) Homecoming
  • (1980) Practical Hermeneutics
  • (1986) Epiphanies of Darkness
  • (1990) Theology at the End of the Century
  • (1995) Desiring Theology
  • (1999) Epiphanies of Darkness: Deconstruction in Theology
  • (2003) The Surface of the Deep

See also[edit]