Theology in a Global Context: The Last Two Hundred Years

Theology in a Global Context: The Last Two Hundred Years

Theology in a Global Context: The Last Two Hundred Years

Theology in a Global Context: The Last Two Hundred Years

Synopsis

In an increasingly global world, context becomes more important than ever. As our national and international narratives intertwine, untangling them can become a difficult task, especially in the field of theology. In this book, Hans Schwarz leads us into the web of Christian theology's recent past from Kant to Schleiermacher to Mbiti and Zizioulas, pointing out all the theologians of the last two hundred years who have had a major impact beyond their own context. With an eye to the blending of theology and biography, Schwarz skillfully draws the lines of connection between theologians, their history, and wider theological movements. Schwarz's initial focus on European and American Protestant theology broadens to include the rich worlds of Catholic and Orthodox theology, also looking into liberation, feminist, African, East Asian, and Indian theology. Extensive primary source quotations from such varied and eminent theological figures as John Henry Newman, Karl Barth, Paul Tillich, Jacques Maritain, Gustavo Gutiirrez, Elisabeth Sch]ssler Fiorenza, Desmond Tutu, and more enrich the experience by allowing them to speak in their own voices. All who are interested in doing theology will find Schwarz's "Theology in a Global Context" invaluable in charting their relation to the past, thus enabling them to set a course for the global theological future.

Excerpt

A student once told me: "There is nothing more obsolete than yesterday's newspaper." Indeed, the purpose of a newspaper is to tell us whatever is new and not to confront us with dated information. In fact, does it even make sense to consider what occurred in the past if we are virtually unable to assimilate all the information that confronts us every day? Have we not become more and more a now generation that is solely concerned about the latest, in sports, musical entertainment, and science?

No generation before has encountered so many new things every day as do we. This is in large part due to the immense progress and expansion of information technology through the World Wide Web, cable TV, and the immense progress in higher education — more people hold Ph.D.'s now than in all previous centuries combined. At the same time that we are confronted with the immensity of the daily newness, we emphasize, as perhaps never before, where we are from and where we have been. Where we have resided, where we went to primary, secondary, undergraduate, and graduate school, are important references for our lives.

It is exactly this rootedness in the past that makes the confrontation with the present both bearable and meaningful. If we had no past, we would simply drift on the waves of the present. Only the connection between past and future can provide us with an orientation, because it links the present both forward and backward. The present makes sense if there is a future toward which we move, and we can understand the present much better if we consider its past. We realize more and more that even the most wholehearted dedication to the present cannot do away with the fact that we are to a large degree products of . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.