Good Taste, Bad Taste, and Christian Taste: Aesthetics in Religious Life

Overview

Christians frequently come into conflict with themselves and others over such matters as music, popular culture, and worship style. Yet they usually lack any theology of art or taste adequate to deal with aesthetic disputes. In this provocative book, Frank Burch Brown offers a constructive, "ecumenical" approach to artistic taste and aesthetic judgment—a non-elitist but discriminating theological aesthetics that has "teeth but no fangs."
While grounded in history and theory, ...

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Good Taste, Bad Taste, and Christian Taste: Aesthetics in Religious Life

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Overview

Christians frequently come into conflict with themselves and others over such matters as music, popular culture, and worship style. Yet they usually lack any theology of art or taste adequate to deal with aesthetic disputes. In this provocative book, Frank Burch Brown offers a constructive, "ecumenical" approach to artistic taste and aesthetic judgment—a non-elitist but discriminating theological aesthetics that has "teeth but no fangs."
While grounded in history and theory, this book takes up such practical questions as: How can one religious community accommodate a variety of artistic tastes? What good or harm can be done by importing music that is worldly in origin into a house of worship? How can the exercise of taste in the making of art be a viable (and sometimes advanced) spiritual discipline? In exploring the complex relation between taste, religious imagination, and faith, Brown offers a new perspective on what it means to be spiritual, religious, and indeed Christian.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195136111
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 9/28/2000
  • Pages: 336
  • Lexile: 1530L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Frank Burch Brown is Frederick Doyle Kershner Professor of Religion and the Arts at Christian Theological Seminary. He is author of Religious Aesthetics (1989) and Transfiguration: Poetic Metaphor and the Languages of Religious Belief (1983). He is also a composer and a director of a graduate program in church music.

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Table of Contents

Prologue: Religious Taste
1 Good Taste, Bad Taste, and Christian Taste 3
2 Art in Christian Traditions 26
3 From the Love of Religion to the Love of Art 62
4 The Taste for Art and the Thirst for God 95
5 Kitsch, Sacred and Profane: The Question of Quality 128
6 Ecumenical Taste: The Case of Music 160
7 Making Sacred Places, and Making Places Sacred 199
8 Styles and Stages of Faith and Art I: The Next Stage 217
9 Styles and Stages of Faith and Art II: Practicing Christianity Artfully 252
Notes 271
Index 301
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