Zimmermann, Jens 1965–
Zimmermann, Jens 1965–
Born 1965, in Germany; immigrated to Canada, 1988; married; wife's name Sabine; children: Anika, Benjamin. Education: University of British Columbia, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., 1997.
Academic. Trinity Western University, Langley, British Columbia, Canada, associate professor of English and modern languages. Research chair in interpretation, religion, and culture, Canadian Council, 2006-11.
Recovering Theological Hermeneutics: An Incarnational-Trinitarian Theory of Interpretation, Baker Academic (Grand Rapids, MI), 2004.
(With Norman Klassen) The Passionate Intellect: Incarnational Humanism and the Future of University Education, Baker Academic (Grand Rapids, MI), 2006.
Contributor to journals, including Faith Today.
Jens Zimmermann's research interests include literary theory, literature, philosophy, and theology. He published his first book, Recovering Theological Hermeneutics: An Incarnational-Trinitarian Theory of Interpretation, in 2004. The account criticizes the churches for not setting aside their biases and reexamining their epistemological commitments to engage in discussion with interpretive philosophers over the issue of Christianity being a hermeneutical faith.
Adonis Vidu, reviewing the book in the Heythrop Journal, commented that Recovering Theological Hermeneutics "is illuminating in more than one respect" and ventured: "Hopefully, such a well written and challenging book will start a fruitful discussion in the field of theological hermeneutics." Vidu also observed that "at times Zimmermann's book raises more questions than it answers, yet even in this it he manages to provoke." Thom Chittom, writing in Religion & Theology, noted that Zimmermann "makes an impassioned and sophisticated push toward the recovery of theological hermeneutics." Chittom explained that "Zimmermann carefully follows the implications of Luther's incarnational hermeneutic to its ontological and ethical conclusions. His chapter on Luther's cruciform linguisticality is insightful and elegant. It is also quite necessary, as Luther's influence on Martin Heidegger and Jacques Derrida is both critically established and important for later denouements in Zimmerman's argument." Chittom concluded that "the technical demands of individual chapters might be hard-going for a lay or undergraduate audience. Its index suggests decades of reading, and may very well invoke the same. Nevertheless, it is an innovative work, and well worth the time for those interested in developing a theological response to developments in philosophical and deconstructive hermeneutics."
In 2006 Zimmerman coauthored The Passionate Intellect: Incarnational Humanism and the Future of University Education with Norman Klassen. The book looks into the humanist traditions of education by discussing its history in Christianity. Perry Glanzer, reviewing the book in the Journal of Church & State, found it odd that Zimmermann and Klassen "admonish Christians to apply Incarnational Humanism by focusing less on Christ's human particularity and more on the incarnation's general affirmation of humanity and nature and what it means for a Christian understanding of common grace." Glanzer suggested, however, that the incarnational humanism the authors discuss "may be the better example to follow."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Heythrop Journal, Volume 48, number 5, 2007, Adonis Vidu, review of Recovering Theological Hermeneutics: An Incarnational-Trinitarian Theory of Interpretation, pp. 836-838.
Journal of Church & State, winter, 2007, Perry Glanzer, review of The Passionate Intellect: Incarnational Humanism and the Future of University Education, pp. 160-161.
Religion & Theology, September, 2005, Thom Chittom, review of Recovering Theological Hermeneutics.
Calvin Seminars in Christian Scholarship Web site,http://www.calvin.edu/scs/ (June 20, 2008), author profile.
Trinity Western University Web site,http://www.twu.ca/ (June 20, 2008), author profile.