Collapse Volume VII, 437–478


Spiritual Meat

Resurrection and Religious Horror in Bataille


In his treatise The Resurrection of the Dead, Athenagoras of Athens, the second-century Christian apologist, notes a number of perplexing problems in the Christian idea of resurrection. Like many Christian thinkers of the period, Athenagoras conceives of resurrection in material terms; resurrection for him implies the resurrection of the body, with all its parts intact. But this idea poses some basic questions. Knowing that bodies decompose and decay, how is it possible to ‘raise up’ a body at all, let alone a body that is ‘incorruptible’?…