Academic journal article Theological Studies

Across Borders: Latin Perspectives in the Americas Reshaping Religion, Theology, and Life

Academic journal article Theological Studies

Across Borders: Latin Perspectives in the Americas Reshaping Religion, Theology, and Life

Article excerpt

Across Borders: Latin Perspectives in the Americas Reshaping Religion, Theology, and Life. Edited byjoerg Rieger. Lanham, MD: Lexington, 2013. Pp. vii + 145. $58.50.

Rarely have scholars of theology and religious studies from North and South America collaborated on a project that argues for reimagining the study of religion. This NorthSouth conversation productively draws on postcolonial theory to identify a border or double consciousness characteristic of the authors' contributions. This consciousness coupled with an acute attention to the power differentials at work in the United States and Latin America inform these writings and direct readers toward the horizon of critical theologies of liberation.

In framing this project, Rieger makes clear that Latin Americans and US Latinos/ as, because of their vantage points, can more readily understand the intersecting forces--economic, political, social, and religious--that keep power differentials entrenched and largely hidden. In his words, the

 American Dream must officially be exposed as what it is: a fantasy
 that helps maintain the structures of neocolonialism both inside
 and outside the country. Religion plays its own role in keeping
 this dream alive, not only through the so-called Gospel of
 Prosperity but also through mainline theologies that continue with
 business as usual and do not challenge the status quo (7).

This North-South conversation ably reveals many growing fissures in the theological and religious discourse of our time. …

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