- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: IVP Books (July 10, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0830833943
- ISBN-13: 978-0830833948
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #98,955 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling Hardcover – July 10, 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
We need to transform the culture!
Let's redeem the culture!
We should resist the culture!
What do these phrases really mean?
What do we mean by "culture" when we talk about transforming it?
Is it our Christian calling to redeem "culture?"
Andy Crouch's new book Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling (IVP, 2008) is a landmark work that will create a new culture of its own within evangelicalism. Crouch points out the areas where evangelical thinking about culture-making has been counterproductive, and he charts a new path - one that would have evangelicals understand culture in more tangible ways.
Crouch points out the fallacious ways in which we conceive of "culture." Christians too often think simplistically about "culture" - as if it were some nebulous, overarching thought system in our world. Crouch believes we are wrong to talk of "culture" in this way. Instead, we must start thinking of culture as specific cultural goods (29).
Culture is what human beings make of the world. And these things we make eventually affect the world we live in. We cannot withdraw or escape culture because it is what we were made to do (36).
Analyzing culture does not substitute for the creation of real cultural goods (64). "The only way to change culture is to create more of it," Crouch says (67).
Crouch sees much of evangelicalism's desire to "engage the culture" as well-intentioned but often misguided. We tend to take certain, appropriate gestures toward cultural artifacts and make them postures - our position towards all cultural artifacts.Read more ›
"Culture Making" offers sharp insight into the issue of vocation, delivered methodically, yet beguilingly, via elegant and sometimes beautiful prose. Andy Crouch sets the scene and tells the story of culture, then rapidly sweeps the reader into this story, finishing with a heart-stopping, imagination-grabbing, challenge to go and make something of the world.
After defining the terms--culture is what we make of the world, creating new culture is the only way to change culture (although gestures of condemnation, critique, copying and consumption may certainly have validity)--Crouch filters the biblical story from Genesis to Revelation through the lens of culture, then addresses our role as co-creators and cultivators with God in this world and the next (it's filled with co-created cultural goods that pass what I call the `new Jerusalem test', and the idea takes my breath away). While all three sections of the book are tightly integrated, it is this third section, entitled "Calling", that really sings.
Crouch's broad definition of culture making--the introduction of any cultural good--is also liberating for those of us with a narrow view of vocation.Read more ›
It was smart, challenging, and most of all very humane. I couldn't stop thinking about it and talking about it long after I finished reading. For Christians who see their role as cultural critics, Andy's book provides a new framework for understanding our role as culture makers. For non-Christians, the book provides a fresh perspective on the grace that sustains and transforms our desires to build, create, and restore. Can't recommend it enough.
This is a very helpful and thought provoking book, but I do think it gets weaker as it goes on. The first section is the most helpful as it critiques common assumptions about culture, and will most likely get you thinking differently about the subject. The middle section is important, because theology is always important, but if you do not accept some of the premises its helpfulness is limited. And then the third section - about how to actually apply all that has gone before - is the flimsiest.
So, in some ways Crouch falls into the same trap as the worldview advocates he criticizes - lots of good analysis, but a lack of clear application.
That is not meant to be a carping comment, and indeed, I would be suspicious of someone setting out a '10 point plan of action' in a book like this. The whole point is to point us towards the kinds of things we can do rather than be prescriptive about what we should do, so perhaps any expectation of clearer application is unfair.
My conclusion then? Definitely read the first 98 pages, but see the rest as an optional extra.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love this book!!!!
I read many things (usually Christian works such as Theology/apologetics/christian living books), but this was completely different than anything I... Read more
Excellent analysis of how we, as the Church, got where we are and what to do about it, without losing sight of the Gospel.Published 1 month ago by Jack Smith
A thoughtful attempt to combine orthodox Christianity with modern thinking about culture. Though he depicts God and Jesus as the master culture makers, Crouch shies away form... Read morePublished 1 month ago by C. A. Canik
Culture is sort of a bad word in churches today. Obviously, there is nothing wrong with the word culture, but the concept of culture is too scary for many Christians. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Reid Mccormick
Fantastic analysis of how and why to make, write, design, teach, program -- anything, for the Glory of God and the common good of creation.Published 4 months ago by Joel S Newton
Culture Making has some good information in it about how Christians should live in the secular world, but there are two aspects that ruined the book for me. Read morePublished 5 months ago by idye
This is a great tour de force of the theology of a current crisis issue.Published 5 months ago by John Mumford
Andy Crouch is an influential and more or less centrist evangelical, as his résumé plainly reveals: long-time InterVarsity campus minister at Harvard, former editor... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Mark L Ward Jr