What Would Jesus Deconstruct?: The Good News of Postmodernism for the Church

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Overview

Many in the church who are wrestling with ministry in a postmodern era view deconstruction as a negative aspect of the postmodern movement. But John Caputo, one of the leading philosophers of religion in America and a leading voice on religion and postmodernism, sees it differently. In this lively and provocative analysis, he argues that in his own way Jesus himself was a deconstructionist and that applying deconstruction to the church can be a positive move toward renewal.

"Caputo brilliantly manages to bring thought to life and life to thought. He wears his learning and scholarship so lightly that one has the impression of returning to a flesh-and-blood world where Jesus deconstructs and reconstructs our lives. Challenging, compassionate, witty, and wise. This book is compulsory reading for anyone concerned about the future of Christianity."
--Richard Kearney, Charles Seelig Professor in Philosophy, Boston College

"Let this book settle the debate once and for all: postmodern philosophy does not preclude true Christian faith. In fact, taken rightly, postmodernism leads not to nihilistic relativism but to a robust faith in the Savior, who himself was bent on deconstruction. Caputo is a sheep in wolf's clothing."
--Tony Jones, national coordinator of Emergent Village, author of The New Christians: Dispatches from the Emergent Frontier

"This is a marvelous little book. It enables readers to understand deconstruction as the hermeneutics of the kingdom of God and provides a glimpse of what this concept might look like in the hands of Jesus as applied to the church. This will be difficult therapy, and many of us will be inclined to resist. However, let us remember that while discipline is painful in the moment, it produces a harvest of peace and righteousness in the long run. May the church learn from the wisdom found in these pages."
--John R. Franke, professor of missional theology, Yellowstone Theological Institute

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801031366
  • Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 11/1/2007
  • Series: The Church and Postmodern Culture
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 322,376
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Meet the Author

John D. Caputo (PhD, Bryn Mawr College) is Thomas J. Watson Professor of Religion and Humanities and professor of philosophy at Syracuse University. He is the author of numerous books, including The Weakness of God (winner of the 2007 AAR Award for Excellence in Constructive-Reflective Study of Religion), On Religion, The Prayers and Tears of Jacques Derrida, and Deconstruction in a Nutshell: A Conversation with Jacques Derrida.
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Table of Contents

1. In His Steps-A Postmodern Edition
2. Spiritual Journeys, Postmodern Paths
3. A Prayer for the Impossible: A Catechumen's Guide to Deconstruction
4. Jesus, the Theo-Poetics of the Kingdom, and Praxis
5. What Would Jesus Deconstruct? Or, Whatever Happened to the Sermon on the Mount?
6. The Working Church: Notes on the Future
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