Who's Afraid of Postmodernism? (The Church and Postmodern Culture): Taking Derrida, Lyotard, and Foucault to Church

Front Cover
Baker Academic, Apr 1, 2006 - Religion - 160 pages
The philosophies of French thinkers Derrida, Lyotard, and Foucault form the basis for postmodern thought and are seemingly at odds with the Christian faith. However, James K. A. Smith claims that their ideas have been misinterpreted and actually have a deep affinity with central Christian claims.

Each chapter opens with an illustration from a recent movie and concludes with a case study considering recent developments in the church that have attempted to respond to the postmodern condition, such as the "emerging church" movement. These case studies provide a concrete picture of how postmodern ideas can influence the way Christians think and worship.

This significant book, winner of a Christianity Today 2007 Book Award, avoids philosophical jargon and offers fuller explanation where needed. It is the first book in the Church and Postmodern Culture series, which provides practical applications for Christians engaged in ministry in a postmodern world.

What people are saying - Write a review


User Review  - Russ - Christianbook.com

Smith has delivered a good primer with his treatment of Postmodernism as (1) he “unpacks it” (i.e., provides guiding explanations, etc.) and (2) shows why rather than being the “bogeyman” of the ... Read full review

User Review  - Aaron Denbo - Christianbook.com

The book is an excellent book on the Christian adaptation of post-modernism. Smith effectively decodes the sometimes difficult concepts of the likes of Foucault and Derrida (if you've read their work ... Read full review


Series Preface
Is the Devil from Paris? Postmodernism and
Nothing outside the Text? Derrida Deconstruction
Where Have All the Metanarratives Gone? Lyotard
Foucault and
A Proposal for the Emerging
Further Reading

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2006)

James K. A. Smith (Ph.D., Villanova University) is the Gary & Henrietta Byker Chair in Applied Reformed Theology & Worldview at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In addition, he is editor of Comment magazine and a senior fellow of the Colossian Forum. He is the author of Introducing Radical Orthodoxy, coeditor of Radical Orthodoxy and the Reformed Tradition, and editor of the Church and Postmodern Culture series (www.churchandpomo.org).

Bibliographic information