Category: Anthropology

Dignity Beyond Accomplishment

“The examination combines the techniques of an observing hierarchy and those of a normalizing judgment. It is a normalizing gaze, a surveillance that makes it possible to quantify, to classify, and to punish. It establishes over others a visibility through...

/ January 19, 2021

Book Review: The End of the Christian Life by J. Todd Billings

We live in a death-denying and death-defying culture. We know, on an intellectual level, that one day we will die, yet we tend to avoid contemplating this inescapable truth more than is strictly necessary. For modern people, death is an...

/ November 3, 2020

The Logic of the Body

Making ourselves vulnerable is dangerous. It’s dangerous because many of us have theological lenses that prohibit us from seeing those who are emotionally overwhelmed as deserving compassion. Too often we see their anxiety, depression, or anger as guilty until proven...

/ October 22, 2020

Tethered Still

I am a mother and a theologian. These two facts belong together, inextricable as they are for me and my experience of them. I was pregnant with my first child as I began my doctoral work; I carried her to...

/ September 29, 2020

The Tribe of Ishmael: Whiteness and Christian Identity

In 1889, an Indianapolis pastor named Oscar McCulloch gave a speech that empowered the development of eugenics in America. McCulloch had studied the Ishmaelites, a poor, white, extended family, and named his speech, “The Tribe of Ishmael: A Study in...

/ March 24, 2020

Star of the Sea

I have a weakness for verses about Mary and the sea. There is that line from Eliot, that bit of the Dry Salvages, when he asks the lady, whose shrine stands on the promontory to pray for all those who...

/ January 31, 2020

Faithful Extension and the Question of Human Origins

William T. Cavanaugh and Jamie K. A. Smith, eds.: Evolution and the Fall, Eerdmans, 2017. The questions the church confronts most severely at present are questions of human nature, and what to call good and what to reject as broken...

/ December 19, 2017

The Sexual Revolution Is Abortion

A few years ago I read an online exchange between two self-described Christians that has lingered with me as a good summary of our cultural moment. One of the speakers identified as bisexual, but also as a Christian, and was arguing...

/ February 6, 2017

God Become Man: Toward a Richer Theology of the Incarnation

For He was made man that we might be made God; and He manifested Himself by a body that we might receive the idea of the unseen Father; and He endured the insolence of men that we might inherit immortality. —St....

/ March 25, 2014

Less Noisome Insistence, More Joyful Exuberance on Heaven

Heaven is a hot topic these days, thanks to N. T. Wright and some of his noisier interpreters. On Thursday, Matt pushed back a little on some of the more sweeping criticisms of the evangelical view of “heaven,” arguing that most evangelicals...

/ June 20, 2012