Bodies in Society: Essays on Christianity in Contemporary Culture

Bodies in Society: Essays on Christianity in Contemporary Culture

by Margaret R. Miles
     
 

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Education is about learning to think. Much of what we call thinking, however, is a hodge-podge of repetitious self-talk, opinion, and cutting and pasting of second-hand ideas. Moreover, thinking in the present has often been alien to scholars who were tempted to think abstractly. But life and thought belong together and require each other, as Plotinus pointed out

Overview

Education is about learning to think. Much of what we call thinking, however, is a hodge-podge of repetitious self-talk, opinion, and cutting and pasting of second-hand ideas. Moreover, thinking in the present has often been alien to scholars who were tempted to think abstractly. But life and thought belong together and require each other, as Plotinus pointed out many centuries ago: "[T]he object of contemplation is living and life, and the two together are one" (Ennead 3.8.8). Presently, many women and men in the academic world are thinking concretely within the context of their own lives and with acknowledged accountability to broader communities with whom they think and to whom they are answerable. The essays in this volume consider Christianity as an aspect of North American culture, bringing the critical tools of the academy to thinking about some of the perplexing and pressing problems of contemporary public life.

Three interactive and interdependent themes traverse these essays: gender, the effects of media culture, and institutions. Each of these themes has been central to Margaret Miles's work for thirty years. Each understands corporeality as fundamental both to subjectivity and society. Miles finds that Christianity, critically appropriated, provides ideas and methods for thinking concretely about life in North American society.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781556354212
Publisher:
Wipf & Stock Publishers
Publication date:
08/28/2008
Pages:
242
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.50(d)

Meet the Author

Margaret R. Miles is Emerita Professor of Historical Theology, the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley. She was Bussey Professor of Theology at the Harvard University Divinity School until 1996, when she became Dean and Academic Vice President of the Graduate Theological Union. Her books include A Complex Delight: The Secularization of the Breast, 1350-1750 (2008), Rereading Historical Theology: Before, During, and After Augustine (2008), The Word Made Flesh: A History of Christian Thought (2005), and Plotinus on Body and Beauty (1999).

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