Beyond Fideism: Negotiable Religious Identities

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Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2010 - Religion - 183 pages
After the postmodern turn, every tradition seeks the right to have their own rules of rational discourse. The crucial question is: are there ways to communicate between the traditions so that the traditions do not need to give up their identities in order to take part in conversation?

Vainio examines the basic assumptions behind well-known types of Christian theology and seeks ways in which they might interact with one another and with other non-Christian traditions without capitulation of their identities. Vainio claims that there are religious identities that can be negotiated and communicated, and that there are ecclesiastical doctrines which can be meaningfully discussed among churches. This book explores three key areas: analysis of the uses of "fideism" within classical Christian theology; clarification of different types of theological method that seek to express the task of theology in contemporary setting; an explanation of the contours of religious identity and rationality which takes seriously both classical Christian identity and pluralistic contexts where most of the Christian communities dwell nowadays. The proposal for "negotiability" of Christian identity draws together ideas from, among others, virtue epistemology, Reformed epistemology, communitarianism, and feminist sensibilities.

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Fideism and Recent Developments in Modern Theology
Fideism and Christian Tradition
Interlude The Postliberal Turn in Theology
The Predicament of Fideism and Postmodern Theological Method
On Theological Rationality and Religious Identity

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About the author (2010)

Olli-Pekka Vainio is Post-doctoral Researcher and Adjunct Professor of Ecumenical Theology, University of Helsinki, Finland.

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