Political Theology and the Powers of Democracy: American Thought for the Anthropocene
Saint Paul, Minnesota | June 15-18, 2020
For its 2020 annual conference, the Institute for American Religious and Philosophical Thought will attend to the issues raised by Michael S. Hogue in his American Immanence: Democracy for an Uncertain World (New York: Columbia University Press, 2018).
In a time in which it has become empirically and scientifically impossible to think about the human apart from nature, not to mention morally and politically irresponsible, we need more than ever to rethink our concepts of power, value and common life in an ecological context that takes seriously the internal relatedness of human and more-than-human life. (Hogue, 121)
Taking up his own charge, Hogue delineates and criticizes what he calls “the redeemer symbolic”—a condensation of deficient concepts of self and other, and concomitant destructive practices, which continually reconfigures itself throughout American history to preserve a belief that America is an exceptional nation and that, as such, it is justified in extracting value from others, and externalizing the costs of so doing upon others. Hogue also seeks to criticize the redeemer symbolic by recourse to a metaphysical critique of “traditional theism.” He argues that the “American immanental” tradition of thought offers an alternative conception of God/Nature that would delegitimate, if not dissolve, the redeemer symbolic. That conception stresses the vulnerability and resilience of the complexly “intrarelated” system of systems that is Nature. It is the heart of a political theology that in Hogue’s estimation, would ground a politics of democratic risk for an ever more beautiful community of shared vulnerability and resilience.
Details on Call for Papers available here: IARPT 2020 CFP. All proposals should be sent in Word format to both Andrew Irvine (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Austin Roberts (email@example.com). The deadline for submissions is February 1, 2020.
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