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Category: Justice

Though a commitment to justice animates many projects across the field of political theology, debate about what justice entails is at least as common as agreement. Classical concerns include the just distribution of goods, the equal access to public accommodations, and the fair protection from violent incursion. These are amplified and reconfigured in an age of rising economic inequality, mass incarceration, and the increased surveillance and discipline of bodies by corporate and government institutions.

Resources

Bibliography:

  1. Kelly Brown Douglas, Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God (2015)
  2. Mark Lewis Taylor, The Theological and the Political: On the Weight of the World (2011)
  3. Devin Singh, Divine Currency: The Theological Power of Money in the West (2018)
  4. Miguel De La Torre, Embracing Hopelessness (2017)
  5. Houria Bouteldja, Whites, Jews, and Us: Toward a Politics of Revolutionary Love (2017)
  6. Traci C. West, Solidarity and Defiant Spirituality: Africana Lessons on Religion, Racism, and Ending Gender Violence (2019)

Relevant Journal Articles:

  • Vincent Lloyd, “For What Are Whites to Hope?” Political Theology 17, no. 2 (2016): 168-181
  • Linn Tonstad, “Debt Time is Straight Time,” Political Theology 17, no. 5 (2016): 434-448
  • Monica Coleman, “Metaphysics, Metaphor and Multiplicity: A Postmodern Womanist Theology for Today’s Thorniest Religious Issues,” Political Theology 18, no. 4 (2017): 340-353
  • Nindyo Sasongko, “Epistemic Ignorance and the Indonesian Killings of 1965-1966: Righting the Wrongs of the Past and the Role of Faith Community,” Political Theology 20, no. 3 (2019): 280-295
Can We Not Understand That? Toward a Just and Equitable Accommodation of Indigenous Religious Practices on Public Lands

For the very reasons that religious freedom discourse is powerful, arguments made in its register, especially as they stretch the indeterminacy of religion in the directions of collective rights, should appropriately be on the table in Native peoples’ efforts to protect what is sacred to them.

Auto-Jurisdiction and Indigenous Futures

By auto-jurisdiction, I mean to convey the ways people look past the putative authority and mechanisms of prevailing jurisdictions and, alternatively, invoke the authority of tradition as long-term grounded experience in order to construct and speak forth their legitimacy.

Why Not Religious Freedom?

Like the advocates I follow, I don’t ask what religious freedom really means; I ask what it can mean.

Religious Freedom, Native Traditions, and Pedagogical Possibilities

I want to make a case for the possibility of creating a public that can see Native religion, conceive of Native sovereignty, and then, perhaps, support the protection of beloved places under the mantle of religious freedom.

A Hollow Freedom: On Lyng v. Northwest Indian Cemetery Protective Association

Neither the government nor the Court doubted the religiosity of the practice for which the Yurok, Karuk, and Tolowa nations sought protection. Yet, arguments about religious freedom obscured the true issues at stake and the need for sovereign freedom.

American Milagros: Michael Tracy’s Borderlands of Sacred Art and State Violence

In these panels and throughout his work, Tracy instantiates a tension between violence and redemption as he conscripts objects and places—material objects and physical places—into his aesthetic theology of the borderlands.

Democratic Discernment and the Fate of Community Murals

To illustrate the centrality of democratic discernment in the fate of public art, I turn to two cases where the voices of local communities have been ignored in decisions about the removal of murals from public spaces on the Northside of Denver, Colorado.

On Walls, States of Exception, and the Power of Public Art

The wall at the US southern border and the wall in Israel are are material testaments to ethnic exclusion. Both walls are partially constructed. Both are resisted and ridiculed by public art.

Movement and Contra-movement: A Pneumatological Response to Migration

Life in God is defined by a joyous freedom of movement, a loving and adventurous invitation to the dance of the Spirit. The book of Acts is witness to those who accepted this invitation like Peter, moved to go to a Gentile centurion’s home, thus initiating a new ministry with global implications beyond his ken.

From Faithful Patriot to Faithful Presence

The Trump administration’s most recent actions at the border signal the end of all pretense by the president—and many in his base—that Christian ethical principles should meaningfully inform U.S. immigration and asylum policies. Patriotism and faith have become indistinguishable.

Futures for Public Theology

Part of our duty is to generate the publics that we want to inhabit, not simply to assent to the publics that are foisted upon us.

#NoBootsNoBedsNoWall: Cuentos on how Industrial Complexes Feed off the Social Sin of Othering

…and they all crossed freely

…and they were heard without initial judgement