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Everyday Theology: How to Read Cultural Texts and Interpret Trends (Cultural Exegesis) Paperback – March 1, 2007
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From the Back Cover
"I am one of those Christians who have theological questions about Eminem, MySpace, grocery stores, and the like. So I am very pleased that we now have this book of stimulating and important reflections on such matters. These authors demonstrate how to think theologically about popular culture."--Richard J. Mouw, president and professor of Christian philosophy, Fuller Seminary
"Kevin Vanhoozer, Charles Anderson, and Michael Sleasman bring together a bright team of culture readers, who help us see common things in uncommon ways and describe them with uncommon yet useful terms. They are pioneers, I hope, of a new era among faithful people in constructive, discerning, and loving engagement rather than reactive, superficial, and judgmental antagonism toward our culture."--Brian McLaren, author/activist (brianmclaren.net)
"There is now a proliferation of books on religion and popular culture but very few books on theology and popular culture. This book seeks to remedy that and offers a rationale for why and how Christians should 'read' popular culture. Kevin Vanhoozer's approach strikes a wise balance between interpreting popular culture with open good will for where God might really be speaking and a biblically formed suspicion for the cunning manufacture of idols. The selection of cultural artifacts examined in part 2 is wide ranging, quirky, and inspired."--Kelton Cobb, professor of theology and ethics, Hartford Seminary
About the Author
Charles A. Anderson is a PhD candidate at the University of Cambridge.
Michael J. Sleasman (PhD, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School) is managing director and research scholar for the Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity and affiliate professor of bioethics at Trinity Graduate School.
Top Customer Reviews
Drawing on Mortimer Adler, he proposes that we understand the world in, behind, and in front of a cultural text. Strong echoes of Marshal McLuhan are present throughout.
On the downside, Vanhoozer imports too much lingusitic terminology for everyday readers (locutionary, perlocutionary, illocutionary) to communicate his framework, which could be presented with more accessible language. He also notes the importance of using the creation-fall-redemption storyline in interpreting cultural text and trends, but does not deliver on how or why this is important. Though far from "everyday" in places, overall he presents a cultural hermeneutic that is compelling and intriguing.
"Everyday Theology is not an encyclopedia of contemporary culture, nor is it a full-blown textbook of cultural hermeneutics. What it provides instead is a model for 'reading' culture theologically as well as a number of illustrative examples." (p. 10)
What will you gain from this book? First, if you're like many who've been out of touch with society in general, you'll get a snapshot of some important current attitudes and activities. If you're thoroughly in touch then this book will help you step back and look objectively at what's going on in culture today.
In this interpreation I was especially encouraged by Chapter 6 (by Michael Sleasman), Swords, Sandals, and Saviors: Visions of Hope in Ridley Scott's Gladiator. Mr. Sleasman does not try to make something Messianic (equivalent to Christ) out of the movie but shows how it conveys a somewhat messianic message, an evidence of the worlds hope and hopelessness.
Recommendation: Get the book. It's worth every penny you spend, and more. Have it available to all the leaders in your church. Couple the book with Harry and Mary for an invaluable package to help you understand culture and trends, and plan your public and interpersonal responses accordingly. For the cause of the Gospel.
The book begins with how to use everyday theology as a practical task of living each day as faithful disciples of Christ Jesus. The practical task of everyday theology follows a series of essays that engages cultural texts and trends, from the music of Eminem to the grocery store checkout lane to the phenomenon of internet blogs. The purpose of the book is to teach Christians to get the theological lay of the cultural land. Vanhoozer wants Christians to find an understanding of what is going on in ordinary situations and why.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a very well articulated book on engaging culture theologically. It is filled with great practical examples and the reader is given the tools necessary to observe and... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Elizabeth M Jorgensen
Wonderful and insightful! Vanhoozer provides some great essays which challange the way one has viewed the Christian's integration with the world!Published on August 12, 2013 by Ben J. Welch III
This was a required text for a graduate school class. It does have a more academic than a worldly perspective. Read morePublished on June 27, 2013 by Starlet
Title: Everyday Theology: How to Read Cultural Texts and Interpret Trends edited by Kevin Vanhoozer, Charles Anderson, and Michael Sleasman.
Pages: 288. Read more