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By email: [email protected]
By phone: 0207 639 7400
By post: 131 Bellenden Rd, Peckham, SE15 4QY
By Rail - Peckham Rye Railway Station - 5 minutes walk
By Bus - The P13 stops outside.
By Foot - at the corner with Choumert Road, opposite The Victoria Inn.
By Car - If you need to motor you way here then you will find some pay street parking nearby.
Secondhand Bookshops in London: Books Peckham
Books Peckham is a tucked away secondhand bookshop in South London not to be missed out on. A favourite for me
Turns out I’d have been unknowingly passing this gem by whenever I walk through Peckham to buy plantains….Why are they so expensive now? Is it Brexit? Can we blame gentrification?
Anyway! Was excited to finally drop by, got to pick up a few books, speak to the owner and just rummage through that beautiful collection of secondhand books. Enjoyed seeing stacks and stacks of vintage Penguin paperbacks and a lot of old titles I’ve never heard of. Will definitely be back
Peter owns and runs Books Peckham , he’s been selling here for about two years. Speaking to him, he is obviously an avid reader- he knew pretty much all the books I referenced and you can tell he loves his collection. He sells Zines too and ran a workshop over the weekend.
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How did you get started?
I used to sell seconhand books at a Sunday market in Camberwell then opened up shop here in Peckham. Previously was thinking of opening up in Holdrons Arcade but that didnt happen. I used to sell my own books but now I buy, sell and do house clearances. Clearing for people who are moving house or have died.
With all the changes around Peckham, has your clientele become any different over the years? More hipsters?
I get a lot of people either on their way to Peckham Levels or Bussey Building … some are lost! Toward evening time and on the weekend, there are more trendy types about, yeah! I have more best sellers out on the weekend for the crowd but always keep unique titles out
What are your favourite books?
The books I’m reading change all the time, I get a lot of recommendations too
Have you done any interesting house clearances?
My last house clearance was an actor who lived in Victoria, he’d been in some bond films. Another was the wife of an Eastenders actor. Also did a house clearance for a vicar who had passed away- he had loaaads of gay porn!
I can imagine it would be so much fun to clear people’s books and you would probably get first dibs one some early editions! I saw an uncountable number of pensioner age looking penguins which fascinated me but also some new titles
Do any events happen here?
Its a small space so not many but there is one next week. Next Friday (November 8th) Royal College Of Arts will be having a small reading here to conclude their work on alternative distribution networks.
I want an old book that I’ve never heard of but will love. Can you recommend anything?
No Pressure! *thinks and looks around for a while; asks what Ive read lately. I give a list of titles which don’t really have anything in common!*
You might like this one, sadly the author died recently: Brown Girl, Brownstones by Paule Marshall
I got that and a few other titles for around £6! Like I said, I will be back
If you are looking for a secondhand bookshop in London, be sure to stop by. Open 11am- 6pm 2-3 days a week including Saturday. Check out @bookspeckham Instagram page on Mondays to find out opening times each week…. chances are if it’s sunny, Peter will be out!
Post edit 2021: Books Peckham has moved! New shop at 20 Maxted Road (entrance on Oglander next to Quickprint) 125 Rye Ln, Peckham, London SE15 4S
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Peckham Writes by Review book shop
Thu nov 02 2023 at 07:00 pm to 10:00 pm, peckham rye train station - southern railway | london.
To celebrate story-telling of all genres and mediums, Making Connections is teaming up with our favourite local bookshop Review to offer an evening in the Old Waiting Room with inspiring local authors and illustrators.
Authors Evie Wyld (author of The Bass Rock: 'a gothic triumph' - Max Porter) and Staffan Gnosspelius (author of Bear: 'excellent' - Shaun Tan) will talk about their writing, process and how they are engaging with mental health in their work.
Drinks will be available, titles by all the authors will be on sale and there will be an artwork display to explore. It promises to be a fascinating evening!
Event Venue & Nearby Stays
Peckham Rye Train Station - Southern Railway, The old waiting room, London, United Kingdom
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August 24th, 2022, book review: passport to peckham: culture and creativity in a london village by robert hewison.
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Estimated reading time: 10 minutes
In Passport to Peckham: Culture and Creativity in a London Village , Robert Hewison digs deep into the history of a contested part of London known for its art scene as well as the challenges of urban regeneration and related gentrification. Bringing together social, cultural, architectural and political history, this book gives readers a passport to journey through the multicultural, multifaceted and dynamic Peckham, writes Niclas Hell .
Passport to Peckham: Culture and Creativity in a London Village. Robert Hewison. Goldsmiths Press. 2022.
In his new book, Hewison explores Peckham, a place with an extraordinary concentration of underground and high-brow culture. The word ‘place’ is warranted: no lasting administrative designation has ever been called Peckham. Despite this, there is a strong local identity, and Peckham is the word used in the media and everyday speech to refer to the area. Hewison settles for describing Peckham as a ‘village’, as seen in his book’s subtitle. In Passport to Peckham , we follow him on a journey through time, urban planning, social deprivation, cultural exuberance and rebirth.
Hewison does not write Peckham’s history with the unconditional love (or love-hate) of someone who grew up in the area – he literally starts the book by telling us that he does not live or work there. Neither is it an academic review of the facts pertaining to Peckham. The book is, in one sense, a microhistory of the area, establishing its architectural history and general timeline. Just as any good microhistory, Passport to Peckham asks the ‘large questions in small places’, as Charles Joyner put it . Peckham has borne witness to important currents in the late-twentieth-century art world, with the successes and controversies of a young Damien Hirst explored in the book, as well as the consequences of multicultural Britain, deindustrialisation and the ensuing gentrification of cities and their outskirts.
Thematically exploring different faces of Peckham, each chapter gradually builds the understanding of a new aspect of the area: its early history, urban planning, the cultural scene. The advantages of this approach do not appear until somewhere in the middle of the book, when the different styles of the chapters start appearing as freestanding sequels to the others. Many aspects of Peckham deserve an essay of their own, and they receive one in this book.
Image Credit: Crop of ‘Welcome to Peckham’ by Matt Brown licensed under CC BY 2.0
Chapter Four explores the historical context of art and creativity in Peckham. A substantial part of this background is the foundation and development of the surrounding art schools and galleries, of which Goldsmiths’ College is the most notable and well-explored (the book is published by Goldsmiths Press). Around the turn of the last century, individual art studios, galleries and Goldsmiths were all opened within a few years of each other, paving the way for a South London art district. This chapter, among others, paints a picture of Peckham as an underdog. Full of ideas, creativity and resourceful individuals, yes, but positioned on the relative periphery, delaying it from realising its full potential.
Chapter Six applies the background knowledge from the first chapters to discuss the urban renewal of the 1990s and 2000s. Neither a potential site for waterfront development nor a candidate for the full-scale culture-led or wellbeing-oriented trends in urban regeneration, the urban renewal in Peckham was mainly aimed at clearing out rundown houses. Portions of Peckham were ‘rife with drug use, raddled with squatters, rigid with racial tension, and avoided by a frightened and corrupt police force’. The 1980s and its crescendo of social problems led to ambitious renewal projects in the coming decades.
There has been a cultural varnish provided by the creations of local and international artists being inserted into the public space. Despite this, the key renewal projects in Peckham were primarily brick-and-mortar developments. The relatively close Canary Wharf and its hyper-regenerated skyscrapers of the same era cast their shadow over the more modest projects in Peckham.
The physical book does not seem meant to be read in one passionate stint. The chapters paint different pictures of a multifaceted Peckham, and the intended bite-sized reading experience is underlined by the book being set in a dense sans-serif font, making reading a bit slower as well as giving the text a coffee-table book aura. It is not a particularly large book, but nicely bound. There are many images, but they are all in black and white. It seems the book, like Peckham, is a product of creativity, with some spartan and some flamboyant features.
Peckham seems to march in step with major developments. For an urban studies academic, there are a couple of especially clear examples of this. First, the extraordinary rise in housing prices during the last decades. Second, the tension between the majority and other social, ethnic and cultural groups: embracing what makes a place unique or shunning what makes it unfamiliar. This is elegantly discussed by Hewison, giving voice to both sides of the arguments, whilst also making us aware of his own opinion.
In this sense, the book does not shy away from taking a stand politically. The ‘neoliberal’ reforms of the 1980s are treated with disdain. Gentrification is discussed from several angles, but the drone pipe of displacement and privilege – with Hewison even quoting Caleb Femi’s poem ‘ Coconut Oil’ calling gentrification ‘chemotherapy’ – constitutes the basis for these chapters. In no way, though, is the book a manifesto against certain types of urban planning. Rather, readers get the sense that Hewison wants to be intellectually honest about his own viewpoints. Positive perspectives on gentrification for Peckham’s black community are also discussed in the conclusions, and the dismissive tone against ‘Mrs. Thatcher’ and her time do not make the book a political pamphlet.
Passport to Peckham gives us just that – a passport to access dynamic Peckham. Hewison does not let Peckham become stylised or cast into any existing stereotypes. Instead, the multicultural, multifaceted place of yesterday and today speak and are spoken to. This book remains thoroughly about the London ‘village’ of Peckham and its creative residents rather than the political and cultural history of wider Britain. Providing food for thought on contemporary debates on urban development, social deprivation and the value of culture, reading this book makes Peckham seem a little more at the centre of the universe than before.
Note: This review gives the views of the author, and not the position of the LSE Review of Books blog, or of the London School of Economics and Political Science. The LSE RB blog may receive a small commission if you choose to make a purchase through the above Amazon affiliate link. This is entirely independent of the coverage of the book on LSE Review of Books.
Banner image credit: Crop of ‘Rye Lane. Peckham, London © Mels van der Mede’ by Melsvandermede licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
About the author
Niclas Hell is a PhD student in Urban Cultural Economics at University of the West of Scotland. His latest publication, a chapter in the anthology Festivals and the City, is published in August 2022 by University of Westminster Press
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In what may well be one of the most difficult books of the year, Professor Peckham attacks the fraudulent language of...
MAN'S RAGE FOR CHAOS
by Morse Peckham ‧ RELEASE DATE: Sept. 15, 1965
In what may well be one of the most difficult books of the year, Professor Peckham attacks the fraudulent language of esthetics and establishes his own terminology based upon Behaviorism. Poetry, painting, music and architecture are reducible to ""signs, or a large variety of dramatic metaphors indicating how we should interpret when we see. Heretically, Peckham proposes that these sights belong in categories which cross-refer among the arts. The ""wild card"" Peckham introduces into this new semantics is the observation that art does not unify and order experience. We are seduced into the fallacy that art satisfies our need for order by the neat packaging in which art objects are presented in concert halls, museums, metrics and buildings. In poetry, Peckham illustrates, sweet disorder prevails and provokes; while order is mythical. Too often in the name of order we eliminate the very quality in a work of art which might expand our ability to perceive. Finally, the perception of art functions as a rehearsal for life... When the reader sheds the feeling that he is in Cloud Cuckoo Land, these ideas become stimulating and forcefully original. One is grateful to have the cobwebs swept out. His last book, Beyond The Tragic Vision, appeared in 1962 (Braziller).
Pub Date: Sept. 15, 1965
Page Count: -
Review Posted Online: N/A
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1965
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» Book Review
Review: Bone Music by Joel Peckham
Stephen F. Austin State University Press, 2021.
Paperback, 90 pages, $18.00.
Joel Peckham’s latest collection of poetry, Bone Music , is his most daring yet, looking with utter honesty at the cartography of healing following substantial loss. Readers of his past work will recall that over a decade ago, the poet experienced a car accident overseas in which he lost his wife and eldest son. In Bone Music , Peckham continues his excavation of grief, sharing a full spectrum of emotions in which he maps the contours of love, joy, fear, sadness, loss, and abundance. These incantatory poems explore both sound and movement in their making of meaning, as readers become in many ways seated in a raft while wave after wave of ocean rocks and lulls and spins—just as any good music does.
Bone Music has a tight focus, concentrating on memory and healing, of rage and the numerous navigations en route to forgiveness, both of others and oneself. The collection has a strong theme of motion, with numerous poems that feature vehicles. In poems such as “Suffering Tape,” Peckham proves himself to be, once again, a god of sound and alliteration: “I could see myself spool out to blues and reds with golds of early evening sun and shadow as I shook and took the shape of starlings flocked or the flame of sunfish staring up at night from the windshield’s blue-black pond.” Here, readers are treated to a feast of momentum, a furious dance on the page.
Yet, this collection, is not intended as simply a quick read. It asks the reader to dwell in the poems, reading them again and again, steeping in the words as a cup of tea grows more potent over time—as memory also grows and fades and becomes in its potency, clearer and not in its being. The book contains two sections: the first, The Quantum Soul , seems to function as an exploration of the interior, of memory and soul-searching, our cosmic relationship to mortality and philosophy, and the second section, In Case of Emergency , as a deeper probe into the nature of life. The latter is an unabashed look at the poet’s own failings and guilt, how one seeks to repair damages, despite repeated trauma, with a will to better one’s self.
Bone Music opens with “Prologue,” in which the line breaks emphasize a kind of rhythm, where the ending line “and was lost” sets the stage for what is to come—a book about various kinds of loss. The five-part “The Wreckage That We Travel In” is particularly astounding, beginning with these lines: “The world must take us by surprise—in spite of all the warnings, all evidence. Even a man shaped by loss takes each new blow in bafflement.” The poem is the reader’s first glimpse of a fascinating form that Peckham echoes throughout the rest of the collection, wherein what seem like prose poems exhibit sudden line breaks in the middle of a sentence:
. . . a matter of perspective and a sheet of glass all that separates the one from the many, this life from the next—what could send us crashing, flying into it? As a boy hurtling
up 93 with my father to visit his father in the nursing home, I loved to stare directly at the trees until they blurred and I could feel that killing speed and imagine I was me and not me and me . . .
Here’s another example from “In Case of Emergency”:
. . . When everything is always at my earlobe breathing
and heavy and hot with lungs as full as any long distance runner’s, wild-
ness is just another kind of intimacy,
an intimacy of layering upon another and another: not one clock
but thousands—all ticking, all chiming . . .
The result of this style mimics a memory, somewhat corporeal, as one thought leads to another, at times without clear transition, yet always with a certain profoundness. Poetic form, even at times in a subversion of form, is exceptional in this collection, and Peckham caters to readers who might also be poets, giving overtures to craft in poems like “RE: Like a Box”: “And if a poem is not salvation it might just be its metaphor: it does what a metaphor does: sheds it skins and slides away….” As a result, many poems become a lesson in poetry writing without compromising the core messages of the collection. Bone Music aims to bring readers along, to help them in their own personal quests.
We glimpse Peckham’s searching in poems such as “Suffering Tape,” where Peckham proclaims: “I learned what breaking meant, how it was transformation; it was crackling; it was resonant.” Or in “Going Sideways,” where the lines acknowledge and reach for greater meaning beyond self:
I do not travel backwards
easily. I circle back in widening arcs
to the same songs, the same pictures floating from between the
covers of the same books, the same unfinished arguments,
to the same desert highway under the same stars reflected on the
same dead sea.
Bone Music intends to take readers off the deep end, to dive into the waters of what living means when grief has followed a person for so long.
Perhaps the most encapsulating poem of the collection can be found in its ending. “The Locomotive of the Lord” is the poem the whole collection builds toward, in that it moves the reader from constellation into a singular picture: “This life is a beautiful / accident made of accidents we try to shape.” Bone Music closes with a precious message of gratitude for what one has, this precious life, including all that is not in the same way anymore but evermore precious in its existence.
In closing Bone Music in this way, Peckham offers a path forward. The acknowledgment of pain, even of continued pain, becomes oddly a comfort—and a source of healing through which one may fully grasp and find joy. Bone Music , as a result, becomes a guidebook for the grief-stricken. By reaching for the grayer edges of human experience, Peckham turns readers toward honesty instead of simple answers, which makes for a lasting poetry collection.
Daniel Lassell is the author of Spit (Michigan State University Press, forthcoming July 2021), winner of the 2020 Wheelbarrow Books Emerging Poetry Prize selected by Gabrielle Calvocoressi, as well as a limited-edition chapbook, Ad Spot (Ethel, April 2021). His recent poetry appears or is forthcoming in Southern Humanities Review, River Styx, Birmingham Poetry Review, Colorado Review, and Prairie Schooner . In his youth, he raised llamas and alpacas on a farm in Kentucky. Today, he lives with his family in Colorado. Find him at www.daniel-lassell.com .
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Book review: divine attributes: knowing the covenantal god of scripture.
Divine Attributes: Knowing the Covenantal God of Scripture . By John C. Peckham. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2021. 336 pages. Paperback. $29.99.
John C. Peckham is professor of theology and Christian philosophy at Andrews University, from whence he also earned his Ph.D. He has published a number of books, most of which have focused on the doctrine of God. His book on theological method, Canonical Theology: The Biblical Canon , Sola Scriptura, and Theological Method , received notable acclaim and was the subject of its own panel at the annual meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society (2017). The book at hand is somewhat of a follow up to his recent The Doctrine of God: Introducing the Big Questions , which was written to be an introductory text on the doctrine of God. In that book, Peckham surveys multiple models of God and the divine attributes in descriptive fashion. Divine Attributes is Peckham’s own constructive account of the divine attributes.
Peckham begins his book with a brief introduction to his subject matter and with a few words on his methodology for the project. Most of the Introduction provides a summary of some of the many characteristics predicated of God in Scripture, which provides an initial outline of the structure of his book.
The subject of Peckham’s first chapter is “The God of Scripture and the God of the Philosophers.” By “the God of Scripture,” Peckham simply means the portrait of God as described in the books of the Old and New Testaments. By “the God of the Philosophers,” he is referring to multiple models of God that have been proposed in the history of the philosophy of religion. These include “strict classical theism,” process theism, open theism, “moderate classical theism,” and “the God of Greek philosophy” (20-27). He terms the model that he develops throughout the book as “covenantal theism,” which emphasizes the real covenant relationships that God enters into with his creation. Covenantal theism is a version of what he previously referred to as “moderate classical theism.” Peckham then provides a few words on theological method and “canonical theology” (29-37).
The contents of the doctrine of God, he claims, need to meet two conditions in order for Christians to affirm them: 1) they must enjoy adequate biblical warrant, and 2) they must be systematically coherent. Though doctrine done well will also consult the important voices of the church’s heritage, being faithful to this heritage is not as important as meeting these two conditions. By “canonical theology,” Peckham means “Scripture is a unified corpus of writings that God has commissioned as the uniquely normative rule of faith and practice and the final norm of theological interpretation, to be understood in subjection to guidance by the Holy Spirit” (29, italics original). By emphasizing that the canon is the final norm of theological interpretation, he is insisting that the canon does not require an authoritative interpretative tradition.
Scripture, he claims, “must be normative with respect to one’s doctrinal and metaphysical frameworks” that they bring to the task of interpretation (31). This means that readers’ hermeneutical horizons of understanding must ultimately be subjected to the authority of what Scripture itself claims, and these horizons include the church’s tradition. If we require certain metaphysical and ecclesiastical lenses to properly interpret Scripture, then we functionally submit Scripture to the authority of those lenses. If Scripture is to be the final authority on matters theological then it needs to be capable of critiquing and correcting our hermeneutical and metaphysical frameworks (32-33). Thus, Scripture must be exegeted and interpreted on its own terms.
Peckham addresses multiple divine attributes per chapter in chapters 2-6. He discusses the attributes of aseity, immutability, and “qualified passibility.” By “aseity,” Peckham means that God exists of himself and relies on nothing outside of himself for his existence or essential properties. Implied in God’s aseity is God’s necessity, which claims that God is a necessary being who could never not exist. Peckham argues for a limited account of divine immutability. Whereas the classical tradition has denied both intrinsic and extrinsic change in God, Peckham is only interested in denying the former. The God of the Bible, he argues, experiences extrinsic, or relational, changes frequently as a result of his entering into covenants with Israel and the church. While God does undergo relational changes, he does not undergo changes in his essential properties. By “qualified passibility,” Peckham means that God does have changing emotions and is able to suffer, but he does not do so essentially. Rather, he is passible only because he has covenanted to be so.
God’s attributes of omnipresence and eternity are the subjects of chapter 3. By “omnipresence,” Peckham means that God is present to all places and times in his fullness. Though God is essentially omnipresent in that he is an incorporeal being, he is also uniquely present to certain people at certain times. Though God is incorporeal his being is compatible with corporeality, otherwise phenomena such as the incarnation would be logically impossible. When Peckham claims that God is “eternal,” he means that God has no beginning and no end. He rejects the classical understanding of eternity as atemporal on the grounds that it does not enjoy biblical warrant. Throughout Scripture, he argues, God is depicted as experiencing temporal succession and enjoying temporal location. The hermeneutical frameworks used to interpret Scripture to claim that God is atemporal, he argues, are not derived from Scripture itself but are imposed onto Scripture. Scripture itself, however, affirms an eternal yet temporal God, which is incompatible with the atemporal God of strict classical theism.
Peckham takes up God’s omniscience in chapter 4. By “omniscience,” Peckham means “that God infallibly knows all that can be known” (111). This might also be understood as God knows all true propositions. He discusses competing models of divine foreknowledge, namely those that take up the question of whether God enjoys “exhaustive definite foreknowledge” (114). These models include determinism, open theism, simple foreknowledge, and Molinism. He argues that Scripture affirms that God enjoys exhaustive definite foreknowledge, which rules out open theism. However, Peckham also argues that Scripture teaches that human agents enjoy libertarian free will, which rules out determinism. Though he does not definitively take a position, he seems most sympathetic to Molinism and its doctrine of middle knowledge.
In chapter 5, Peckham discusses the attribute of omnipotence and God’s providence over creation. By “omnipotent,” Peckham means that God is able to perform any action that is logically possible and consistent with his perfect moral nature (145-47). He rejects the model of omnipotence proposed by process theism, noting that its claims that God “cannot causally determine history” do not enjoy biblical warrant. Rather, Scripture explicitly depicts God as guiding and determining the course and direction of history. However, this does not entail that God causally determines every event in history, particularly the events of moral agents exercising their ability to make libertarian free choices. God can determine history in such a way that he does not infringe upon libertarian creaturely freedom. Like in chapter 4, he draws from the Molinist understanding of divine foreknowledge and providence to make his argument. Because God has covenanted to give his moral creatures libertarian free will, sometimes God’s desires and will are frustrated by said creatures’ choices. This is not to say, however, that God did not know what actions his creatures would freely choose to perform. God knew prior to creation what his moral creatures would freely choose to do, but he also elected to allow them to make these choices though he would prefer them to do otherwise. Such is the case when moral agents choose to sin. However, God is still sovereign and omnipotent and is able to direct history to his desired end despite the sinful choices of his moral creatures.
Peckham turns to God’s moral perfection and the alleged problem of evil in chapter 6. In claiming that God is morally perfect, or omnibenevolent, Peckham means that God is incapable of performing any sort of immoral or unloving action since such actions would be contrary to his essential morally perfect nature. Such benevolence is demonstrated in God’s love for himself and for his creation and in his faithfulness to those with whom he has covenanted. That evil exists is not systematically inconsistent with God’s omnibenevolence. Scripture is aware of the apparent tension between the existence of both God and evil (181-82). He discusses some previous arguments against the logical problem of evil, namely skeptical theism and Alvin Plantinga’s free-will defense. However, Peckham advocates for his constructive theodicy that he developed in one of his previous books, Theodicy of Love: Cosmic Conflict and the Problem of Evil (Baker Academic, 2018). The Bible, he argues, depicts Satan as the author of sin, and there exists between he and God a cosmic conflict. God, Peckham argues, has allowed Satan and his demons to commit certain evils at certain times towards God’s creatures. As a result, God has agreed to a sort of “rules of engagement” to allow Satan to carry out his evil plans. In so doing, God allows space for his free creatures to freely choose to love and worship him despite the evil in the world (189-206). Peckham draws heavily from the conflict between God and Satan in Job in developing this model. At his designated time, however, God will rid the world once and for all of Satan, his demons, and all evil. He refers to this model of theodicy as “a theodicy of love.”
The doctrine of the Trinity is the subject of chapter 7. The essential claims of the doctrine of the Trinity are that God is a single essence and three persons. Following the Athanasian Creed, he affirms that the Father is God, the Son is God, the Holy Spirit is God, but the Father is not the Son or the Spirit, the Son is not the Father or the Spirit, and the Spirit is not the Father or the Son. Peckham understands a “person” to be “a subject with self-consciousness, reason, and will” (217). As such, he advocates for a social model of the Trinity. Each person is coequal, coeternal, and the one true God. Peckham also denies that there exists any form of subordination, be it ontological, functional, or authoritative, within the imminent Trinity. He does, however, question—though he does not necessarily reject—the eternal relations of origin between the triune persons (that the Father eternally begets the Son and the Father and Son together eternally spirate the Spirit). His concern here is primarily biblical in that, he argues, the doctrine of the eternal processions does not seem to enjoy biblical warrant. However, Peckham claims that his conclusion here is not meant to be offered as “a dogmatic conclusion” (237). Peckham instead prefers to describe the imminent relations between the divine persons as eternal relations of love rather than relations of origin. He also briefly touches on the debates surrounding the doctrine of divine simplicity (DDS), claiming that the strict versions argued for by the patristic fathers and the medieval theologians, namely Augustine, Anselm, and Thomas Aquinas, neither enjoys biblical warrant nor systematic coherence (240-41). The final chapter of the book, chapter 8, provides a concluding sketch of the covenantal theism that Peckham has been developing throughout the book.
Peckham has provided us with a well-written and Bible-saturated account of the divine attributes. The book has much to commend. First, most evangelicals will appreciate his emphasis on Scripture as the supreme authority. Such an emphasis is consistent with the patristic and medieval claims about the authority of Scripture, and it is especially consistent with the claims of the protestant reformers. However, many Christians, evangelicals and protestants included, will take issue with the claim that an authoritative tradition, such as that enshrined in the ecumenical councils and creeds, is not needed to rightly interpret Scripture. Since the early centuries of the patristic period, the Christian tradition has emphasized the importance of the church’s tradition, often referred to as the rule of faith, for rightly interpreting Scripture. Peckham’s argument, however, makes some interesting points. Suppose that we must interpret Scripture through the lens of the rule of faith. At this point, we seem to have made the rule of faith equally as authoritative as Scripture. If Scripture must be interpreted by the rule of faith in such a way that is consistent with the rule of faith, how is Scripture ever able to critique the rule of faith? Is it not at least logically (or even conceivably) possible that the rule of faith itself is based off a misinterpretation of Scripture? To be clear: I am not arguing that the rule of faith is erroneous; rather, I’m simply questioning the potential and ability of intersubjective human judgments to err. Peckham’s point is well taken: If the tradition is required to properly interpret Scripture, then there does not seem to be a plausible state of affairs wherein Scripture could ever correct the tradition, thus implying that it is not the supreme authority in doctrinal matters.
Not only does Peckham affirm the supreme authority of Scripture in doctrinal development but he practices it as well. Throughout each chapter, Peckham substantiates his claims with plethora upon plethora of Scriptural citations. Some might allege that this is just another case of biblical proof texting. However, this is something that every theologian does who aims to submit their theology to the authority of Scripture. The question is not whether we should proof text, but whether we will proof text well . When authors proof text from Scripture without paying attention to the literary or historical contexts in which their text of choice was written then there is a large margin for hermeneutical error. Peckham, however, does pay careful attention to both the literary and historical contexts surrounding his chosen proof texts. Though one will not find lengthy treatments of said contexts in the main text of the book, they will find references and content-footnotes in each chapter wherein Peckham engages with some of the best of contemporary biblical scholarship and commentary. Not only this, but he engages recent quality work by biblical theologians as well, such as the projects of N. T. Wright, Gerhard von Rad, Bruce Waltke, John Goldingay, James D. G. Dunn, and John Walton.
In addition to his insistence on doctrines enjoying sufficient biblical warrant, Peckham rightly emphasizes the importance of systematic—logical—coherence in doctrinal development. Simply put, if a doctrinal proposition is logically incoherent, no matter how much historical attestation said doctrine enjoys, then no one should believe it. No one should be willing to accept square circles, married bachelors, or any other contradiction. The logical laws of identity, excluded middle, and non-contradiction are essential tools, not just for philosophical theologians, but for systematic and biblical theologians as well. As a result of this emphasis, Peckham interacts with some of the best of contemporary philosophical theology, especially those representing analytic theology and analytic philosophy of religion. These interlocutors include, but are not limited to, Ross Inman, R. T. Mullins, William Lane Craig, Thomas McCall, William Hasker, Paul Helm, Katherin Rogers, Eleonore Stump, Alvin Plantinga, Brian Leftow, and Richard Swinburne. Many contemporary theologians have been reluctant to engage the analytic tradition due to various alleged reasons, though most of these reasons assume particular properties of analytic theology that analytic theology itself does not always exemplify. It is refreshing to see evangelical systematic theologians engaging the rigorous and fruitful work that has been produced in recent analytic theology.
There are several other positive aspects of Divine Attributes , but I need to take some space to point out an area of weakness, namely Peckham’s lack of engagement with historical theology. Though there are some mentions of significant historical figures, such as Gregory of Nyssa, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Boethius, and Anselm, they are just that—mentions. Though Augustine receives more treatment than the others, most of Peckham’s engagement with his theology is relegated to the footnotes. Divine Attributes would have benefitted tremendously had it provided critical engagements with the doctrines affirmed by these classical thinkers, especially since Peckham departs from their views on significant doctrines such as simplicity, immutability, impassability, and atemporal eternity. Granted, he does engage contemporary theologians and philosophers of religion who do affirm the classical doctrine of God; however, there is something to be said for taking the time to engage the primary historical sources on their own terms. If nothing else, such an engagement could be used to demonstrate how the differing theories of the divine attributes have developed over time, which Peckham could then use to show how doctrine does not develop in a vacuum and that the church has a long history of disagreeing with those previous voices in the tradition, correcting them, and then moving forward. Though this is not a crippling weakness per se, it is one that one would hope to see corrected, perhaps for a future second edition of the book.
Overall, Peckham has written a well-informed, biblically saturated, and carefully argued model of the divine attributes. Students and scholars who are involved in contemporary discussions over the doctrine of God and the Trinity would do well to engage this book, specifically where it invokes the Scriptural witness to provide sufficient biblical warrant for its conclusions—particularly those that depart from the classical tradition. This book would also serve well undergraduate and graduate students of theology, biblical studies, or religious studies, though I would recommend combining it with Peckham’s previous book, The Doctrine of God: Introducing the Big Questions . I would also recommend this book, combined with The Doctrine of God , to lay persons who are interested in better understanding the doctrine of God and the conversations that take place therein. Though it would benefit greatly from more historical-theological engagement, Peckham’s Divine Attributes is a strong contribution to the continuing discussions within the doctrine of God and the Trinity.
Editors Note: The London Lyceum confesses the 2LCF . Wherein Dr. Peckham rejects the 2LCF, we find reasons for concern and the need for revision. However, it is not the mission of the London Lyceum to always publish work that agrees with our confession of faith. We seek to generate thinking and foster an intellectual culture of charity, curiosity, critical thinking, and cheerful confessionalism.
Andrew Hollingsworth (PhD, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary) is Online Instructional Design Specialist and Adjunct Professor of Christian Studies at Brewton-Parker College, Adjunct Professor of Theological and Historical Studies at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and Adjunct Professor of Philosophy at Delgado Community College. His research is primarily on the topics of theological method, the doctrine of God and the Trinity, Analytic Theology, and the theology of Wolfhart Pannenberg. He has published papers in Neue Zeitschrift für Systematische Theologie und Religionsphilosophie , Irish Theological Quarterly , The Global Anglican (formerly Churchman ), and The Global Journal of Classical Theology . He also has published two books: God in the Labyrinth: A Semiotic Approach to Christian Theology and Theology for the Future: The Enduring Promise of Wolfhart Pannenberg [Editor and Contributor]. He serves on the Leadership Team for his local church, Canal Street Church: A Mosaic Community, which is in New Orleans.
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"John C. Peckham’s hermeneutically sophisticated work on the love of God is clearly committed to the authority of the biblical text, and to letting it guide his conclusions. The result is an important contribution on issues that are absolutely central to both biblical and systematic theology. This book deserves serious attention from scholars all across these disciplines."
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Craig G. Bartholomew
Tyndale House, Cambridge
Palm Beach Atlantic University
University of St. Andrews
". . . fills an important gap in the literature addressing the problem of evil; his book is both faithful to Scripture and philosophically sound. Peckham effectively builds his case in a manner that neither affirms evil as necessary; diminishes genuine human freedom; nor surrenders divine omnipotence, omniscience, or omnibenevolence. His bold treatment of cosmic conflict in relation to the problem of evil is insightful. Well done!"
"What strikes me about The Love of God: A Canonical Model is four things: its learning, sophistication, originality and comprehensiveness." Peckham "displays a subtle and sophisticated grasp of the issues; he is sure-footed in theology, biblical interpretation and philosophical theology. . . . the author looks at God's love from a larger number of different angles; every other treatment that I know of is 'pinched' by comparison."
“In our day it takes courage and wisdom to grasp the nettle of canonicity and John Peckham manifests both in this important new book. . . and does so clearly, with a refreshing and astonishingly wide range of engagement, pushing towards the conclusion that Scripture is intrinsically authoritative as the Word of God. . . . In my view this is precisely the sort of work we need our best and brightest theologians to do today."
". . . a one-stop-shop overview of this debate. It includes contributions from across the theological spectrum with representative scholars writing in a dialogical format. This way readers quickly get a sense of the central issues in the debate from different perspectives in the discussion. The result is a clearly written symposium from which scholars and students alike will benefit. I heartily recommend it!"
“Laudably even-handed and researched, elegantly written and explicated, Peckham's eagerly anticipated, student-friendly contribution is a treasure trove. Exploring God's existence is valuable; asking who God is priceless. Peckham investigates the latter by deftly navigating an expansive, philosophically and theologically sophisticated literature to mine substantive doctrine with fertile and far-reaching implications.”
Fuller Theological Seminary
". . . a highly sophisticated and fine-tuned account of the divine attributes. . . . Peckham allows Scripture to be the source, norm, and final arbiter. Thereby, this fine study avoids the trap of attempting a description of the living God of the Bible in abstract, half-empty formal terms; instead, a dynamic, inviting, and spiritually nourishing testimony to who God is and what God does emerges out of a careful exegetical-systematic reflection."
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Giggs & Diddy review – potent chemistry unites Peckham and NYC
Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London Flashy dad-dancing music mogul Diddy and growling south London rapper Giggs energise the crowd with a relentless string of hits and guests
I f you’d have predicted 15 years ago that Peckham’s Giggs and US rap mogul Diddy would one day share a stage in Shepherd’s Bush, you might have received some strange looks. Road-rap legend Giggs half-talks quintessentially British bars (“Walk in the party sporting Armani / half of the crowd’s all snorting my charlie”) sounding like someone who smokes 40 a day while driving through south London drizzle. Diddy, meanwhile, is all exuberance and flashy catchphrases, the shiny suit-wearing personality that helped launch the careers of everyone from Mary J Blige to the Notorious BIG.
Yet UK rap’s ascent to the mainstream is such that it feels natural for them to share a stage. “We could have done an arena, but we wanted it to be intimate and a real party, bruv,” reveals Giggs to the adoring sold-out crowd, whose ticket fees are donated to charity. The hyper-confident, black-tracksuit-wearing MC then launches into the hell-raising sirens of Whippin Excursion and his landmark verse on Drake’s KMT, its Batman punchline screamed back by the crowd. Giggs’s posture on stage is resolute, like someone taking a final stand.
In stark comparison, his friend Diddy (now 54 and recently releasing a surprisingly good R&B-inflected album ) is dressed, giddily dad-dancing, in opulent white. In-between rushed renditions of his most ubiquitous hits (including Bad Boy for Life) he barks hilarious instructions to the DJ: “Don’t play explosion noises when I say the word Love!” He endearingly admits to feeling nervous and, therefore, looks most comfortable when surrounded with unexpected guests (including Shyne, the former Bad Boy rapper turned Belize prime ministerial hopeful).
The show soars when Diddy and Giggs combine for their bass-heavy, euphoric duet Mandem. It’s a shame there aren’t more of these moments, because when Giggs briefly takes on a call-and-response bar during Diddy’s performance of Warning, by the late Biggie, it’s pure magic – but is cut off way too quickly. The show needs fewer solo moments and more of a focus on the pair’s unlikely chemistry.
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However, the hits and guests are so relentless – UK star Potter Payper also comes out – it’s impossible not to feel energised. Giggs standing with Diddy is a reminder of UK rap’s journey from British accents being openly mocked to universally embraced, and how the bridge between London and New York City rap now has foundations so solid that gigs like this feel anything but strange.
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" No parking which was abit annoying but was able to park on a side road for free about a 10 min walk away from the hotel "
" Our room had no outside window so was warm though has air con unit "
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PECKHAM ROOMS HOTEL - Updated 2023 Reviews (London)
Books | A review of “Coach Prime” and other recent…
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Books | a review of “coach prime” and other recent books with a western focus, quirky details make for enjoyable reading, but it’s superficial when it comes to an in-depth look at sanders.
“The Ridge,” by Peter Eichstaedt (Sunstone Press)
Nearly 60 years ago, Reies Tijerina launched a raid on the Tierra Amarilla, N.M., courthouse that led to a mini-revolution over Hispanic land grants. Peter Eichstaedt’s “The Ridge” is a contemporary novel of a fight between local Tierra Amarilla land-rights activists and the government that is eerily reminiscent of that 1967 uprising.
Luke Jackman, a Santa Fe reporter, is writing about a group of Hispanic sheepherders when the group suddenly occupies a land-grant-turned-wilderness area run for the benefit of rich elk hunters. Luke is swept up in the coverage, reporting for his newspaper while at the same time acting as unwilling go-between for the revolutionaries and the police. Sitting beside a campfire with armed guards, Luke interviews El Cuchillo (“The Knife”), the leader, who tells him about the land granted to Mexican settlers nearly 200 years earlier for their common use. Later, Luke meets with the head of a luxury hunting club, who explains why the government keeps the land as a wildlife preserve, where grazing is not permitted.
“The Ridge” is an enticing story. What makes it so is not just the compelling plot but also the book’s accuracy. Characters are true to life, not cliches, and Eichstaedt’s descriptions of northern New Mexico are vivid. Luke’s reportorial accounts read like the real thing. Eichstaedt is spot-on with his depiction of small-town Hispanics, and the arrogant anti-media lines from the rancher who heads the club might have come out of the mouth of a Washington pol. “The Ridge” is a little gem.
“Coach Prime,” by Jean-Jacques Taylor (Mariner Books)
Is there anybody in Colorado who doesn’t know about Coach Prime, who was hired to revive the moribund University of Colorado Buffaloes? Deion Sanders did wonders with the Jackson State University football team. Now, the media-savvy Coach Prime is expected to do the same with the Buffs. In fact, he signed a five-year, $29 million contract.
“We’re coming to work, not to play. We’re coming to kill, not to kick it. Baby, I got to believe that we’re coming …,” he said at an introductory news conference.
“Jackson State was a mediocre program when Coach Prime arrived. Colorado’s entire program needed to be razed. No worries,” writes Jean-Jacque Taylor in this hagiographic biography of the famous coach.
“Coach Prime” is filled with the names of players and coaches at JSU. It’s chock-full of glowing comments about the coach and details on the last JSU season, but it’s superficial when it comes to an in-depth look at Sanders. There are some quirky details that make for enjoyable reading. Coach Prime rarely says anything harsher than “durn,” and among his friends, he counts Snoop Dog and Lil Wayne.
But who cares? After all, as Sanders says, “We’re here not to compete but to win.”
“While Idaho Slept,” by J. Reuben Appelman (Harper)
Americans were stunned by the deaths of four University of Idaho students on Nov. 12, 2022. Reporters descended on the town of Moscow, Idaho, seeking interviews with police, relatives of the dead students, teachers, friends, co-workers, anybody, in fact, who wanted to talk about the murders. They covered the deaths, the funerals, investigation and the anger of the parents and others when police did not find the killer right away. People in Moscow were so tired of being interviewed that some put signs on their doors telling reporters not to knock.
But in fact, the authorities were further along in identifying a suspect than the public knew. Just two weeks after the murder, police were looking at Washington State University Ph.D. candidate Bryan Kohberger as the possible killer. On Dec. 30, he was arrested.
With all the coverage of the murders and their aftermath. It was inevitable that someone would hustle to cobble together books about the killings. “While Idaho Slept” is a pastiche of information gleaned from stories, news reports and official reports about the murders of three women and one man. This is an account of the killings and their aftermath, with interviews with associates of the victims.
There is little new here, although there are some obscure facts. Kohberger once weighed nearly 300 pounds but shed the weight to be acceptable to popular high school classmates. As Kohberger became trimmer, his personality changed. “He wanted to be dominant physically and intellectually,” said a friend. “He had to show that he was smarter and bigger.”
Kohlberger is jailed awaiting trial. The book doesn’t speculate about Kohberger’s future, but does draw together enough on Kohberger’s mental state to suggest that it could play a part in the defense strategy.
“A Light in the Dark,” by Kathy Kleiner Rubin (Chicago Review Press)
A generation before the Idaho killings, Americans were stunned by the vicious rapes and killings of some 30 girls and women by Ted Bundy. Coloradans were especially fearful of the killer, because he had kidnapped and murdered a nurse vacationing in Aspen. Bundy was arrested and charged with that murder, but he escaped from the jail in Glenwood Springs and continued his rampage, culminating in the vicious attacks on four Chi Omega sorority women in Florida. Two died. The other two were left to deal with the mental and physical pain for the rest of their lives.
One of those survivors was Kathy Kleiner Rubin, whose savage beating sickened even hard-core policemen. She spent months undergoing painful reconstruction on her jaw, teeth and tongue, and even some 45 years later is not pain-free.
Kathy, who had nearly died from lupus as a child, determined not to let her experience with Bundy define her. Happily married for many years (and a cancer survivor), Kathy has decided to tell the story she has kept bottled up. Few of her friends knew she had been a Bundy victim, and even her son was surprised to learn the details of the horror that his mother faced that night in her sorority house bedroom.
The author makes clear that this is not just her story but that of the three-score girls and women who were also Bundy victims. They are the ones who should be remembered, she writes, not Bundy. She disputes the image of Bundy as a brilliant, charismatic man who duped naïve women. Most of Bundy’s victims were attacked from behind or in their beds. Bundy was an evil man, she contends, one who cried for his life on the way to the electric chair.
“I want to correct the wrongly recorded part of history,” she writes. “It’s time that Bundy’s legend diminishes and people stop thinking of him as charming and smart when he was neither. It’s time to stop considering what his life would have been if he hadn’t [gone] another way. The total waste of humanity was not Bundy’s death sentence. The total waste of humanity,” she concludes, was the loss of his victims.
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