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The Apocalypse of the Sovereign Self

The Apocalypse of the Sovereign Self

Recovering the Christian Mystery of Personhood

By Gil Bailie

336 pp

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About the Book

The Apocalypse of the Sovereign Self is a collection of stories, fictional and factual, highlighting two themes: the autonomous self, now in a profound crisis; and the person, whose Christian sources and contours have too long been overlooked. The ongoing cultural and confessional evisceration of Christianity all too graphically proves the validity of Christ’s warning: “Apart from me you can do nothing” (Jn 15:5). For these words were addressed to the first Christians, and they now apply not only to Christians but also to those whose exposure to Christ has been merely cultural, those who mistakenly think that the spiritual resources that fostered and sustained the dignity of the human person will survive the renunciation of the faith that gave that dignity its salience.


“How can we save our society? How can we save our own lives? In this book, Gil Bailie addresses these two most important questions. Astonishingly erudite, wonderfully accessible—and utterly intent on answers. A magnificent meditation on the ultimate things.”


host of Uncommon Knowledge and former speechwriter to President Ronald Reagan


 “A tour de force through philosophy, theology, history, film, literature, and lived experience, woven together by a master craftsman, which makes present the mystery that had been hidden for ages—a mystery which the world must desperately recover: the full meaning of our personhood. Gil Bailie has given us a great gift. This book left me wanting more in the best possible sense.”


author of Wanting: The Power of Mimetic Desire in Everyday Life

“Gil Bailie’s The Apocalypse of the Sovereign Self is a masterpiece of both analysis and Christian wisdom. And it could not come at a more opportune time. The present age has become utterly unhinged as the apotheosis of the therapeutic self has, as Bailie notes, morphed into the utter dissolution of the self. Bailie dissects this with a jeweler’s eye for flaws, then lays out a sane Christian anthropology as the only antidote. I cannot recommend it more highly.”


retired professor of theology and owner of the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker Farm in Harveys Lake, PA


“Gil Bailie has done it again. The Apocalypse of the Sovereign Self: Recovering the Christian Mystery of Personhood is a most timely and important contribution for working out our present crisis. The title alone is worth the price!”


Professor Emeritus, NYU, and author of Faith of the Fatherless: The Psychology of Atheism


“What makes this book so necessary is its recognition that in this era of feverish rejection of our own history, our corporate identity, nothing new is required, for all that matters, everything that saves, is already here. We need only to be reminded that the individual is not an idol, not a dehumanizing end in itself, but is instead just what the Church understands it to be: an instrument open to the Spirit and destined to do it service.”


senior contributor to The Federalist and keeper of the weblog Studio Matters  

About the Author

GIL BAILIE is the founder of The Cornerstone Forum, a founding member of The Colloquium on Violence and Religion, a member of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars, and Fellow of the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology.

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