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Category: Traditions

Religious and secular traditions are internally plural and in constant development through engagement with external others. Political theology engages these (a)religious formations and their diverse global manifestations.

Resources

Bibliography:

  1. Delores Williams, Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk (1993)
  2. Saba Mahmood, Religious Difference in a Secular Age: A Minority Report (2015)
  3. Vincent Lloyd, Black Natural Law (2016)
  4. Tisa Wenger, We Have a Religion: The 1920s Pueblo Indian Dance Controversy and American Religious Freedom (2009)
  5. Daniel Boyarin, Border Lines: The Partition of Judaeo-Christianity (2004)
  6. The Commission on Theological Concerns of the Christian Conference of Asia (ed.), Minjung Theology: People as the Subjects of History (1983)
  7. Ashon Crawley, Blackpentecostal Breath: The Aesthetics of Possibility (2016)
  8. William T. Cavanaugh, The Myth of Religious Violence: Secular Ideology and the Roots of Modern Conflict (2009)

Relevant Journal Articles:

  • Inese Radzins, “Simone Weil’s Political Theology,” Political Theology 17, no. 3 (2016): 226-242
  • Lap Yan Kung, “Parent-Child and Center-Edge Metaphors: A Theological Engagement with the Social Imaginary of ‘One Country, Two Systems,’” Political Theology 20, no. 5 (2019): 392-410
  • SherAli Tareen, “Muslim Political Theology Before and After Empire: Shāh Muḥammad Ismāʿīl’s Station of Leadership (Manṣab-i Imāmat),” Political Theology 21, no. 1-2 (2020): 105-125
  • Julie E. Cooper, “Heretic or Traitor?  Spinoza’s Excommunication and the Challenge That Judaism Poses to the Study of Religious Diversity,” Political Theology 21, no. 4 (2020): 284-302

The media has been flush with stories and commentary on religion in the public square. When a panel of religious leaders is called to testify before a congressional oversight hearing, how could it be otherwise? For a country which has canonized a separation between religion and governance these spectacles of power and politicking quickly call into question the Post-Christendom thesis….

I would like a vote in the decision to choose the next Archbishop of Canterbury. Ideally, if I am honest, secretly, I would quite like to have the only vote. But that would be monarchy, and I don’t believe in that for all sorts of reasons, and nor do I believe in oligarchy, so what I would like to see is a democratic election. Perhaps something like they have in the Episcopal Church in the US, an open contest in which candidates put forward their ecclesial and spiritual credentials…

Aerosol Icons and Subversive Spiritualities – Take 1

Over the last few years I’ve noticed several key strands emerging in relation to thinking about the nature and role of ‘Church’ in the 21st century….At one end of the spectrum we find attempts to re-assert a ‘church-centric’ postmodern Christian vision which arguably eschews serious engagement with the social sciences and is wary of faith groups partnering with government. We could think of this as an ecclesiology of/for the ‘big society’, a new ‘Christendom’ or what has become known as ‘radical orthodoxy’ (seen for example in the work of John Millbank). At a grassroots level it’s possible to see some linkage between these ideas and what has become known as ‘emergent church’. At the other end of the same spectrum we see the emergence of an alternative ‘post-secular’ theological narrative within which ‘Church’ finds its space as part of a network (or perhaps rhizome) of narratives of meaning in a society that has become increasingly suspicious of organized religion of any sort. We might call this ‘third space’ ecclesiology (seen perhaps in the work of Chris Baker) – more ‘Occupy’ than ‘big society’. As the place of faith in the public sphere has once again become a central political question the Christian community in the UK finds itself at a watershed moment. These two strands of political theology continue to stimulate challenging discussions about the future for faith in the 21st century. And yet both approaches leave me feeling uneasy for three reasons…