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Theological Genealogies of Modernity

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International virtual conference on the stories of how we came to inhabit the modern world.

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The conference will run from 13:00-16:50 (BST) each day.

Genealogies of modernity are broad narrative accounts of the rise and nature of our present cultural condition. Theology nearly always features, in some way or another, in narratives about the formation of modernity, even if its role is just being a discourse and set of practices that was gradually marginalized by the onset of a more secular age. This conference gathers together an international team of scholars to explore genealogies of modernity sympathetically and to evaluate them critically. The contributors will discuss a range of important figures and focused topics, and they will pay special attention to stories that are often, though perhaps unhelpfully, understood as decline narratives—accounts of modernity that do not associate it unambiguously with progress. So-called decline genealogies have significant influence within theology across several confessional traditions, but like any narrative with the massive scope of a genealogy of modernity, making a case for them is necessarily complex. How are “decline” narratives and other accounts constructed? If these stories seek to do something more than just to describe historical processes, how do subtly normative dimensions enter into them? How do genealogical narratives look from the perspective of constituencies that are often marginalized?

www.theogenealogies.co.uk

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Conference Papers:

Christine Helmer, "Gen[der]ealogy: A Theological Account"

Jonathan Teubner, "Liberal Progress, Historical Decline: Adolf von Harnack and the Practice of Historical Theology in the United States"

Cyril O’Regan, "Heidegger's Apocalyptic Philosophy and the Return of Marcionism"

Brad Gregory, "Is Global Ecological Disaster a Sufficient Criterion for a 'Narrative of Decline?' Capitalism, Liberalism, and the Anthropocene"

Joel Rasmussen, "A Vote of Thanks to Nietzsche: Christianity, Modernity, and Cultural Plurality"

John Milbank, "Theology, Philosophy and History"

Silvianne Aspray, “How Then Should We Write Genealogies? A Proposal”

Ragnar Misje Bergem, “The Spirit of Modernity and its Fate”

Peter Harrison, "Genealogy, Normativity, and Naturalism"

Darren Sarisky, "Recharacterizing 'Decline' Narratives"

Pui-Him Ip, "Spiritual Exegesis, Ressourcement, and Theological Genealogies"

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