Entertainment Theology (Cultural Exegesis): New-Edge Spirituality in a Digital Democracy [NOOK Book]

Overview

"God has become one of Time magazine's favorite cover boys and spirituality has become a fashion accessory," writes Barry Taylor. Entertainment Theology exhorts Christians to embrace new vehicles to communicate gospel truth--or face extinction."In the hands of a musician, poet, and artist, theology is not delivered prepackaged and labeled but is, rather, God-talk that is creative and evocative. Barry Taylor leads us out of our studies and our pews to do our theology in the street, in response to the media ...
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Entertainment Theology (Cultural Exegesis): New-Edge Spirituality in a Digital Democracy

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Overview

"God has become one of Time magazine's favorite cover boys and spirituality has become a fashion accessory," writes Barry Taylor. Entertainment Theology exhorts Christians to embrace new vehicles to communicate gospel truth--or face extinction."In the hands of a musician, poet, and artist, theology is not delivered prepackaged and labeled but is, rather, God-talk that is creative and evocative. Barry Taylor leads us out of our studies and our pews to do our theology in the street, in response to the media bombardment and the many voices and images around us. Great entertainment stimulates our imagination and invites our participation, and Taylor does both. Entertainment Theology is not the last word, but a work in progress."--Eddie Gibbs, Fuller Theological Seminary"Barry Taylor has a remarkable ability to bring together perspectives on contemporary culture that other commentators often miss. His wide-ranging understanding of both culture and practical theology come together in a conversation that is accessible as well as provocative. No serious scholar can afford to ignore Taylor's insights on the interaction of culture and spirituality."--John Drane, author, The McDonaldization of the Church"A powerful and provocative summons to renewed attentiveness to the strange new world rising up around us. Against the tendency to defensively dismiss emerging spiritualities as either uselessly nebulous or somehow demeaning to religious tradition, Taylor articulates the more excellent way of critical affirmation, celebrating what he sees as a democratization of spirit and a shift toward a more globally minded, yet communal, conversation about the meaning of God. Entertainment Theology is the place where Donnie Darko, Buddhism, the Lorax, Tom Waits, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights interface. It announces the end of the tired, old world where these conversations were thought to be beyond the pale and challenges us to see the postmodern world (on the way and already here) as an ever-emerging opportunity for redemptive and redeeming reassessment. Intensely recommended."--David Dark, author, Everyday Apocalypse
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Exploring the connections between "post-secular" culture and emerging forms of belief, Taylor (artist-in-residence at Fuller Theological Seminary and associate rector of All Saints Episcopal Church in Beverly Hills) argues that " 'spirituality' is the new religion of our times." This wide-ranging book uses examples from pop culture, particularly movies, and ideas from a variety of postmodern observers to argue that a democratization of spirit is leading to new forms of faith and a "re-enchantment of Western culture." Taylor then turns from observer to evangelist as he calls for "an end to the present form of Christianity" in favor of "Christian spiritualities." While Taylor brings considerable enthusiasm and extensive reading to bear on his topic, many of the book's vague generalities are unsupported by evidence, and he fails to define who is actually affected by the cultural sea change he insists is occurring. His intended audience isn't clear, and weak writing and tone shifts also mar this ambitious book. In tracing nascent trends and arguing for traditional Christianity's demise, Taylor ignores the vigorous ongoing practice of Christian religion around the globe, including the call to social justice in a suffering world. (Mar.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Library Journal

Taylor (artist in residence, Fuller Theological Seminary; A Matrix of Meanings: Finding God in Pop Culture) here takes as his starting points the oft-heard comment "I'm not religious, but I'm spiritual" and his own redefinition of theology as global communal conversation about all things sacred. Using examples from film (e.g., Donnie Darko, Waterworld), music, and art, he employs the term entertainment theologyto indicate "the relationship between the contemporary religious climate and the popular culture." Although Taylor uses popular culture to look at contemporary spiritual practices, his book differs from William D. Romanowski's more straightforward analysis, Eyes Wide Open: Looking for God in Popular Culture, for Taylor combines largely dense cultural analysis with personal observation, providing an impressionistic portrait of the intersection of contemporary culture and spirituality. Ultimately, though, he says little new about the future of Christian theology except that it needs to move away from traditional content and form. For larger theological collections.
—Diane Harvey

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781441206039
  • Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/1/2008
  • Series: Cultural Exegesis
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 1,208,118
  • File size: 391 KB

Meet the Author

Barry Taylor (PhD, Fuller Theological Seminary) is artist in residence for the Brehm Center and an adjunct professor at Fuller Theological Seminary, where he teaches a series of spiritually innovative classes on music, film, and contemporary theology. In addition, he is an associate rector at All Saints Episcopal Church in Beverly Hills. He has coauthored two books, A Matrix of Meanings: Finding God in Pop Culture and A Heretic's Guide to Eternity.
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Table of Contents

Preface

Introduction

1. New Horizons

- Magical, Mystical Polish: The Reenchantment of Western Culture

- The Implosion of Modernity and the Rise of the Postsecular

- Timeless Time

- Space--The Final Frontier?

- Corporeality: The Body Politic

- Authority

- Evolution Not Revolution

- The Decline and Rise of God: The Emergence of the Spiritual Society

- Everything Is Everything

- Emerging Global Culture and the Symbolic Universe of the Media Generation

- A Postmodern Ethic

- New Edge Spirituality

2. New Edges

- Surface as Depth: Faith as Fetish

- Shopping for God: Commodifying Faith

- Entertainment Theology: Religion Goes Pop

- Postsecular Soul Space

- Zen Culture: The Tao of Postmodernity

- The Next Enlightenment: Rational Mystics

- Retrolution: Postmodern Gothic

- Celebrating Celebrity

- Capturing Cool

- Strong-Arming the World: The Rise of Resistant Communities

3. New Orthodoxies

- Playing the Future

- After Christianity

- Identity Shifting

- God-Talk in the Postsecular: Missional Theology for a Radically Different World

- Attitudes

- Theological Containers

- Participatory Theology

- Prophetic Theology

- Practical Theology

- Making Signs: Encoding the Message

- A Final Thought
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