In this addition to the acclaimed The Church and Postmodern Culture series, leading practical theologian Christian Scharen explicates the relationship between theology and its social context. He engages with social theorist Pierre Bourdieu to offer helpful theoretical and theological grounding to those who want to reflect critically on the faith and practice of the church. Church vitality requires looking outward to inquire how God is at work loving the world and acting for its good amid real burdens and brokenness, says Scharen;in Fieldwork in Theology, he integrates theology and ethnography to articulate a vision for the church's involvement with what God is doing in the world. The book provides concrete examples of churches living out God's mission to help a wide array of readers understand the social context of doing theology.
Fieldwork in Theology will benefit professors and students in philosophy, theology, and ministry courses, particularly those undertaking ministry internships or fieldwork assignments. Students and faculty who want to integrate theology and ethnography will also find it of interest. Brief and engaging chapters work well for the classroom and substantial footnotes and bibliography provide ways to explore the issues more deeply.
About the Series
The Church and Postmodern Culture series features high-profile theorists in continental philosophy and contemporary theology writing for a broad, nonspecialist audience interested in the impact of postmodern theory on the faith and practice of the church.
Series Editor's Foreword James K.A. Smith
1. Fieldwork in Theology: Waking Up to the World God Loves
2. Rigorous Self-Reflection: Bachelard, Science, and Sin
3. Embodied Perception: Merleau-Ponty and the Incarnate Body
4. Practical Logic: Bourdieu and the Social Art of Improvisation
5. Surrendering to the Other: Wacquant and Carnal Sociology
Epilogue: Understanding as a Spiritual Exercise