Fortress Introduction to Contemporary Theologies

Fortress Introduction to Contemporary Theologies

Fortress Introduction to Contemporary Theologies

Fortress Introduction to Contemporary Theologies

Synopsis

"Beginning with the tatters of Europe after World War I, the authors deftly survey a myriad of Christian theologians. These theologians have responded creatively to the steep challenges to faith in this tumultuous century - from Karl Barths No! to Reinhold Niebuhr's Christian realism, from Dietrich Bonhoeffer's "religionless Christianity" to Rosemary Radford Ruether's feminist liberation theology. Easily accessible to both the theological student and the inquiring lay reader, this succinct and reliable guide opens doors to some of the most profound religious insights of our time." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

In the arts and literature, the technical meaning of “contemporary” is something that fits between the current and recent, on the one hand, and the modern, on the other. But contemporary also has a more general or popular meaning according to which it designates what has occurred in the last hundred years or so. Adopting this latter meaning gives us a definite place to start. Anyone who knows anything about contemporary theology knows that a decisive break with the old and an inauguration of a whole new scene began to take place about 1920. and this break—with its ongoing proliferations, reactions, detours, and dead ends—is what we mean by “contemporary theology.”

But with repect to those many proliferations, detours, and so on—only someone very foolish would think to have captured all that in the space of a short book. the task of boiling down and straining out the most crucial people and ideas is bound to be a frustration for the authors. It gives us a new appreciation of the words of 2 Macc. 2:26: “For us who have undertaken the toil of abbreviating, it is no light matter but calls for sweat and loss of sleep” (NRSV). It will also be frustrating for some readers whose favorite theologian does not receive the expected attention or whose pet idea is not represented at all. But the alotted space is all that we have. We made the best choices we could.

Most of the major theological movements of the last hundred years or so have each been primarily associated with one thinker. This is reflected in our chapter subtitles, which draw our attention to the thinker or thinkers who might be regarded as the primary figures of the movement or idea or as the one . . .

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