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There is no better statement of the lifework of Langdon Gilkey, theologian, teacher, interpreter of actuality. Gilkey has spent a lifetime in quest of some viable resolution of the seeming incompatibility of science and religion, the material and the spiritual, the secular and the sacred.
Thirty years ago, ina review of Gilkey's Naming the Whirlwind, John D. Godsey evaluated the theology of Langdon Gilkey. Godsey's words still ring true. "There is," Godsey said, "no theological writing in America I find more profitable to read than Prof. Gilkey's. His analyses and critiques are filled with illuminating insights and pioneering thoughts; he writes with an unpretentiousness and an openness that are utterly refreshing; and there is never the slightest doubt about either his Christian commitment or his solidarity with modern secular man. This is not to say that he does not agonize occasionally over how he can be simultaneously Christian and secular, but his is a healthy agony, one with which a lot of us can identify these days."
Students of theology have found profitable reading in the writings of Langdon Gilkey and, indeed, have discovered there illuminating insights, pioneering thoughts, and even a healthy agony with which every serious thinker can identify. Now we have a systematic and critical evaluation, a critical exposition and appraisal of the theology of Langdon Gilkey.
Editors Pasewark and Pool rightly insist that this is more than a Festschrift: these essays do "celebrate the life and work of Langdon Gilkey, but specifically in the context of examining the major contours of Gilkey's own theological labors." In practical terms, these essays by a corps of Gilkey's students, comprise an insightful and helpful commentary on the work and writings of Gilkey. With these pages in hand, the next generation of students surely will find reading Langdon Gilkey on the "understanding of ourselves in time" to be even more profitable.
Langdon Brown Gilkey for more than forty-five years has helped shape the direction of contemporary theology. From 1963 until his retirement in 1989 he taught Theology at the University of Chicago Divinity School.
|Part 1.||Situating Gilkey's Thought|
|1.||Making Sense of Ultimacy: Truths of Experience in Langdon Gilkey's Theological Development||3|
|2.||Debts and Contributions: The Milieu of Langdon Gilkey's Theology||35|
|3.||Beyond Postliberal Foundationalism: The Theological Method of Langdon Gilkey||57|
|Part 2.||Gilkey's Interpretations of Culture|
|4.||Becoming Langdon Gilkey: The Theological Significance of Shantung Compound||169|
|5.||History, Society, and Politics: Langdon Gilkey's Theology of Culture||197|
|6.||Sovereigns Past and Present: The Sciences and the Religious in the Theology of Langdon Gilkey||221|
|7.||Relative Absoluteness: Langdon Gilkey's Approach to Religious Pluralism||239|
|8.||Theology, Symbolism, and Language in the Thought of Langdon Gilkey||259|
|Part 3.||Gilkey's Interpretations of Christian Symbols|
|9.||Navigating in the Whirlwind: Langdon Gilkey's Doctrine of God||277|
|10.||Power, Freedom, and History: The Symbol of Divine Providence in Langdon Gilkey's Theology||303|
|11.||Contingency, Tragedy, Sin, and Ultimacy: Trajectories in Langdon Gilkey's Interpretations of History and Nature||335|
|12.||"A Sharp Turn": Christology in a "Time of Troubles"||363|
|13.||Langdon Gilkey's Theology of the Servant Church||401|
|Part 4.||Gilkey's Practice of Theology|
|14.||From Liberalism to Postmodernism: The Role of Integrity in the Thought of Langdon Gilkey||431|
|15.||Pedagogy and Theological Method: The Praxis of Langdon Gilkey||465|
|Part 5.||Reflections by Langdon Gilkey|
|16.||A Retrospective Glance at My Work||487|
|Notes on Contributors||557|