Reinhold Niebuhr: On Politics, Religion, and Christian Faith

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Oxford University Press, Jul 8, 2010 - Religion - 176 pages
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A primer on the current "Niebuhr revival" of the political left and right, this book traces the significance of Reinhold Niebuhr's thought for secular as well as deeply Christian minds. Placed in the context of religious and cultural history, Niebuhr's theological views deepen and challenge contemporary expertise on issues of war, peace, economic, and personal security. While rejecting cynical pessimism and naive optimism, Niebuhr's Christian realism reinvigorates age-old teachings of the Bible, St. Paul, Augustine, and Kierkegaard. His thought enriches present-day debates between science and religion and between atheists, agnostics, and believers. To live with Niebuhr's legacy is to combine critical acumen with humble self-awareness. It is to pursue a larger common good - for him, God-given - that is shared among individuals, nations, and the world community.
 

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Contents

1 Why Niebuhr in a New Era?
3
2 Taking the Long View of History
19
3 Recognizing Human Ambiguity
41
4 Connecting with Wit and Words
59
5 Revisiting America with Irony
77
6 Debating Politics and the Christian Faith
96
7 Living with Niebuhrs Legacy
116
Notes
141
Index
159
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About the author (2010)

Richard Crouter is the John M. and Elizabeth W. Musser Professor of Religious Studies Emeritus at Carleton College in Minnesota. He is co-editor of the Journal for the History of Modern Theology and author of Friedrich Schleiermacher: Between Enlightenment and Romanticism (2005).

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