Theology, Aesthetics, and Culture: Responses to the Work of David BrownEdited By Robert MacSwain, Taylor Worley
2012 | Oxford University Press (external site)
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David Brown is a widely-respected British theologian who initially made his mark in analytic discussions of Christian doctrine, such as the Trinity. However, with the publication of Tradition and Imagination: Revelation and Change (1999) his career entered a distinctly new phase, focused on theology, imagination, and the arts. Four related volumes followed, dealing with biblical interpretation, Christian discipleship, art and icons, place and space, the body, music, metaphor, drama, liturgy, the sacraments, religious experience, and popular culture. According to Brown, the fundamental thesis underlying all five volumes is that both natural and revealed theology are in crisis, and the only way out is to give proper attention to the cultural embeddedness of both.
Theology, Aesthetics, and Culture is the first attempt to assess the significance of this remarkable series, and its contributors include some of the most prominent philosophers, theologians, historians, biblical scholars, literary scholars, and cultural critics writing today. Aside from its exceptional interdisciplinary range and ecumenical line-up, a distinctive feature is sustained consideration of Brown's analysis of popular culture. Given the stature of the contributors, this volume is not merely of interest as a commentary on Brown's work, but also makes an important original contribution to our understandings of theology, aesthetics, and culture as they relate to the life of the Church, academy, and human society.