Robert D. Cornwall's Reviews > Postsecular Cities: Space, Theory and Practice

Postsecular Cities by Justin Beaumont
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's review
Aug 27, 2015

really liked it
bookshelves: interfaith, politics, social-justice, spirituality, general-literature, history, social-sciences
Read from February 24 to March 10, 2012

In the 1960s Harvey Cox made news with the publication of The Secular City. As he has made clear in "The Future of Faith," he jumped the gun. In this edited volume a wide spectrum of scholars from the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, speak to the reality that we now have entered the era of the Post-Secular City. What is clear is that religion is playing interesting roles in the current and future state of the city.

In the introduction to the book, editors Justin Beaumont and Chris Baker write:

The postsecular city, by contrast to the utopian liberal uplift of the secular city (in which the role of the church and theology is to act as force of social progressive change and a cultural exorciser against all oppressive practices which reinforce hierarchies of power and dependency), reflects a more contested space where hitherto distinct categories are increasingly converging within a postmetaphysical composite. In the postsecular city, the dividing lines (and hence) roles of religion and science, faith and reason, tradition and innovation are no longer rigidly enforced (or indeed enforceable), and new relations of possibility are emerging. (p. 2).

There is great pluralism in our urban centers and new ways for them to navigate this reality. Through a series of essays we're introduced to this new reality. Most contributors come from the social sciences, though some have theological training. Many are Christian, though not all. Worth reading, though its not easy reading!!

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02/24/2012 page 155

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