equality that offered at least some basis for the sort of just polity that democracy was seen to represent.
Graham Maddox elaborates this argument further in claiming that the Judeo-Christiantradition made significant contributions to the development of democratic politics. Amongst these were to be found an emphasis on the individual, most notably in the Protestant doctrine of the priesthood of all believers, an emphasis on freedom as liberating and on the equality of all before God, a stress on community bound together by covenant and contract
This book examines the contribution of different Christian traditions to the waves of democratisation that have swept various parts of the world in recent decades, offering an historical overview of Christianity's engagement with the development of democracy, before focusing in detail on the period since the 1970s. Successive chapters deal with: the Roman Catholic conversion to democracy and the contribution of that church to democratisation; the Eastern Orthodox ‘hesitation’ about democracy; the alleged threat to American democracy posed by the politicisation of conservative Protestantism; and the likely impact on democratic development of the global expansion of Pentecostalism. The author draws out several common themes from the analysis of these case studies, the most important of which is the ‘liberal-democracy paradox’. This ensures that there will always be tensions between faiths which proclaim some notion of absolute truth and political order, and which are also rooted in the ideas of compromise, negotiation and bargaining.
-state capitalist system.
To explore this proposition, let us adopt an approach that is highly unorthodox in the field of
international political theory: the analysis of myths. 2 We will focus here on an interpretation of a millenarian religious myth,
universalised through the Judeo-Christiantradition: the myth of the Tower of Babel. Ancient and
enigmatic, this myth appears in almost identical form in different places and cultures throughout
the history of Mesopotamia. As with all myths that have resisted the passing of time, this one
contains truths and
This edited collection explores how knowledge was preserved and reinvented in the Middle Ages. Unlike previous publications, which are predominantly focused either on a specific historical period or on precise cultural and historical events, this volume, which includes essays spanning from the eighth to the fifteenth centuries, is intended to eschew traditional categorisations of periodisation and disciplines and to enable the establishment of connections and cross-sections between different departments of knowledge, including the history of science (computus, prognostication), the history of art, literature, theology (homilies, prayers, hagiography, contemplative texts), music, historiography and geography. As suggested by its title, the collection does not pretend to aim at inclusiveness or comprehensiveness but is intended to highlight suggestive strands of what is a very wide topic. The chapters in this volume are grouped into four sections: I, Anthologies of Knowledge; II Transmission of Christian Traditions; III, Past and Present; and IV, Knowledge and Materiality, which are intended to provide the reader with a further thematic framework for approaching aspects of knowledge. Aspects of knowledge is mainly aimed to an academic readership, including advanced undergraduate and postgraduate students, and specialists of medieval literature, history of science, history of knowledge, history, geography, theology, music, philosophy, intellectual history, history of the language and material culture.
insignificant politically speaking, and in many processes of political change short-term outcomes have more to do with the contingent choices of politicians whilst long-term trends are heavily dependent upon the cultural, socio-economic and international context within which democratisation takes place.
* * * * *
This book picks up on many of these themes, aiming to provide a synthesis of existing work and to offer new insights into the engagement of Christiantraditions with the democratic experiment. In particular it
by significant levels of immigration
in the 1990s and 2000s. To what extent has the privileged place long occupied
by the Christiantradition in the Irish public sphere been put into question? Can
the current changes be described in ideological terms – as some have done – as
a transitional process at work from the ‘Christian nation’ to the ‘republican
nation’, marking the advent of a finally ‘modern’ Ireland in the anthropological sense of the term?
In a 2008 article on the links between politics and religion in Europe, the
historians and anthropologists Claude
The Oldham group had as a goal a society of free and responsible persons in service to God and their fellows. Its participants saw Britain as an amoral ‘plutocracy’ that betrayed the nation’s Christiantraditions, and they urged changes in the economy and in society to encourage ‘social justice’. Breaking the power of ‘privilege’ was thus a prerequisite for a more Christian society. From such priorities came a strong egalitarian commitment to reducing disparities in wealth and opportunity. On the other hand, the group saw in the
one should do in any given situation. Anscombe’s criticism was taken up by MacIntyre,
who attributed the alleged incoherence of modern moral philosophy to its severance from the
Aristotelian Christiantradition (e.g. MacIntyre  2006 ).
MacIntyre himself has argued that, under modernity, ‘the notion that morality is
anything other than obedience to rules has almost … disappeared from sight’ ( 2006 : 291). In response, he has become one of the most influential
proponents of virtue ethics, which focuses on character rather than
Islam and divine bookkeeping in Nablus (Palestine)
-khayr ) – mostly used in the sense of doing good to
others – lie outside the ‘logic of the calculator’. Moreover,
‘single decisive acts’, such as transmitted in a famous hadith where a
prostitute uses her shoe to give water to a dog that is about to die from thirst, can
suspend calculation. According to the hadith, God saved the prostitute from hell solely
based on this one ‘decisive’ deed (Mittermaier 2013 :
276, 284, 286).
Divine bookkeeping also emerged in the Christiantradition (see Brown 2015
for an account
In this chapter Denis Renevey examines the ways in which writers in the Greek world and, later, western religious teachers used the name of ‘Jesus’ in contemplative practices, and offers ‘answers as to the way in which knowledge of the power of the name “Jesus” was appropriated for different purposes in the two differing Christian traditions, and according to distinct spiritual ideologies’. Renevey discusses the influence of Origen in the development of knowledge about the powerful potential of the name of Jesus and goes on to highlight the attachment to the name in Orthodox liturgical practice from about the ninth century, an attachment that in the fervency of its language anticipates western traditions of affectivity. Among western writers, Renevey focuses on Anselm of Canterbury and Bernard of Clairvaux, the former promoting affective use of the name in personal devotion, the latter in a communal monastic context, as part of a well-conceived devotional scheme.