Kyle Lambelet is Assistant Professor in the Practice of Theology and Ethics at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology. He teaches and researches at the intersection of political theology, religious ethics, and social change. His first book ¡Presente! Nonviolent Politics and the Resurrection of the Dead (Georgetown University Press, 2019) explores the moral and political dimensions of nonviolent struggle through an extended case study of the movement to close the School of the Americas. His current research examines the apocalyptic dimensions of talk about climate change, and how apocalyptic political theologies can offer resources for pastoral and political engagement in the midst of endings. His research has been published in the Journal of Religious Ethics, Political Theology, Social Analysis, and the Journal of Anglican Studies.
To commemorate twenty years of the journal Political Theology, we asked a variety of scholars, including those in the Political Theology Network’s editorial collective, to reflect on where the field has been, where it is, and where it is going.
Is public theology a worthy aim politically? Is public theology necessarily political? Is “the public” of public theology a unitary entity? Who are some paradigms of the public theologian? Can public theology speak in a milieu of deep pluralism? What are the publics of political theology?
In a post published on Friday, I discussed a recently established group, the Tradinistas, who seek to wed a traditional Catholicism with socialism. In that post, I began an assessment of the Tradinistas’ attempt at a Catholic socialism to date, which I will continue in this post.
It would be a mistake to suggest that the apocalyptic is just one thing. It is a fecund tangle of symbols, practices, beliefs, and narratives. Yet, as the catastrophes of our times confound our capacities of narration, there may yet be resources in these troubling archives of worlds’ end.
By spiritualizing place, and thereby transmogrifying place-based identities into racialized ones, Christianity cooperated with the machinations of settler-colonial capitalism in its world-making project. Thus, returning to a consideration of land as one location of God’s action is basic work for any political theology that aspires to move in a decolonial direction.
“What can we do when apparently nothing can be done, and doing nothing is not an option?” Theologian Kyle Lambelet and performance theorist Diana Taylor discuss the challenge and possibilities of presence within systems that seem to allow no alternative.
What would it mean to take apocalyptic talk as a sign of the times: as revealing, uncovering, and disclosing something basic about the cosmos? Could such talk be the beginnings of an eco-apocalyptic political theology?
The founder of Black Liberation Theology, the Rev. Dr. James Cone died on April 28, 2018. We asked scholars, religious leaders, and activists around the Political Theology Network to share their brief reflections on the passing of this scholar, pastor, visionary, and prophet.
For Afropessimism, the World is the katechōn, rather than a particular institution within it. The language of the katechōn as the “restraining power” facilitates how the structure of anti-Blackness is not only a structure of domination and gratuitous violence, but also the foreclosure of a more radical mode of what Wilderson calls gratuitous freedom—which is precisely freedom from the World.