Theology and the Secular

Political Theology 17:378-89 (2016)
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Sarah Coakley’s God, Sexuality, and the Self constitutes a major intervention in the debate over the role of religion in the modern world. Coakley criticizes Christians who reject modernity altogether, arguing that Christian thought should remain in conversation with secular sources. At the same time, she claims that only theology can solve difficulties of widespread concern - for instance, concerning gender and sexuality. Where this suggests that theology is still superior, I argue that the strict distinction Coakley draws between theology and the secular is at odds with the momentum of her approach. On Coakley’s own terms, theology cannot claim superiority over the secular because the boundary between them is necessarily blurry.
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