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Printed in Partnership with The Center and Library for the Bible and Social Justice

Can an economic system receive a response informed by biblical and theological ethics? This collection of five essays, first published in 1991, provides a solid yes to the way "prophetic criticism," rooted in the Hebrew tradition of social justice, can assess the state of today's market economy. In strong contrast to the conservative and Religious Right orientations of the 1980s, the writers of this book "crack the hegemony of neoconservatives in theology." They also provide strong arguments for what H. Richard Niebuhr called a transformational ethic.

Norman Gottwald discusses the rise of the Hebrew prophets and their call for economic justice. William Tabb evaluates contemporary political economies in light of the prophetic tradition. Beverly Harrison develops a prophetic approach to current socio-economic troubles of the middle class. Gregory Baum reviews Catholic perspectives on international economic arrangements and trends. And finally, Dorothee Soelle describes the economic and political implications of the Hebrew concepts of the Sabbath and the Year of the Jubilee.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781532603518
Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Publication date: 10/21/2016
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 114
Sales rank: 389,180
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.24(d)

About the Author

Vernon Visick was a campus minister at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Director of New College-Madison, "an experiment in prophetic inquiry." He holds a PhD in Ethics and Society from the University of Chicago, with a special interest in the ethics of the research university.

J. Mark Thomas taught sociology, ethics, and leadership at Madison College and was chair of the sociology department. He holds a PhD in Ethics and Society from the University of Chicago and has written widely in the areas of ethics and technology, including the book Ethics and Technoculture.

Both editors helped found the Agenda for a Prophetic Faith lecture series of Madison, Wisconsin, one of the longest-running lecture series on religion and politics in the United States. The chapters in this book were originally given as lectures in this series in 1987.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Quest for Economic Justice J. Mark Thomas 1

Chapter 1 From Tribal Existence to Empire: The Socio-Historical Content for the Rise of the Hebrew Prophets Norman K. Gottwald 11

Chapter 2 The Prophetic Tradition: Economic Efficiency and the Quest for Justice William K. Tabb 30

Chapter 3 The "Fate" of the Middle Class in Late Capitalism Beverly W. Harrison 53

Chapter 4 An Ethical Critique of Capitalism: A Canadian Perspective Gregory Baum 72

Chapter 5 God's Economy and Ours: The Year of the Jubilee Dorothee Soelle 87

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"I welcome the reissue of this theological critique, written during the first flush of post-Cold War capitalist triumphalism in the early 1990s. These essays remain relevant for a new generation of faith communities awakening to the challenge of social and economic justice."

—Ched Myers, Activist Theologian

"Justice is at the heart of theological ethics and it can only be measured by the yardstick of the poor, these essays insist. Long after the historical situation described in these essays has changed, this prophetic perspective will endure."

—J. Mark Thomas, from the Introduction

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