Critical Theory of Religion: A Feminist Analysis

Critical Theory of Religion: A Feminist Analysis

Critical Theory of Religion: A Feminist Analysis

Critical Theory of Religion: A Feminist Analysis

Synopsis

"Marsha Hewitt tests the insights - and oversights - of the so-called Frankfurt School, particularly of Max Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno, and Herbert Marcuse. In their dark diagnoses of late modernity, their critique of instrumental reason and domination, and their unwavering utopian espousal of justice and freedom, Hewitt shows, feminist theologians may find allies in their own project. Hewitt also shows how critical themes emerge in the work of Elisabeth Schussler Fiorenza, Mary Daly, and Rosemary Radford Ruether and how their work provides a starting point for a feminist critical theory of religion. Indeed, she argues, feminist theology may itself be the vehicle for critical correction to the Frankfurt School, for reassessing the transformative potential of Christianity, and for delivering on critical theory's emancipatory potential." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

The right consciousness in the wrong world is impossible.

Theodor W. Adorno

Religion is on sale, as it were. It is cheaply marketed in order
to provide one more so-called irrational stimulus among many
others by which the members of a calculating society are cal
culatingly made to forget the calculation under which they
suffer
.

Theodor W. Adorno

Rather than reject religion altogether, this book arises out of the conviction that religion, with the aid of critical social theory, may once again emerge as an emancipatory force within history. Recent developments in certain areas of Christian thought clearly show strong affinities between religion and critical theory that remain largely unarticulated. Although dialogue has taken place for some years between North American and Western European theologians and the heavily revised version of critical theory of Jürgen Habermas, the far more interesting dialogue, yet to take place, will juxtapose the “early” Frankfurt theorists and feminist liberation theology. the Frankfurt theorists I have in mind are Max Horkheimer, Theodor W. Adorno, Herbert Marcuse, and Walter Benjamin. the feminist liberation theologians and theorists whose work most closely resonates (at times in . . .

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