Monday, June 22, 2009

To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise | Religion & Theology | ReligionDispatches

Image; Harvard University Press, 2009.

To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise | Religion & Theology | ReligionDispatches

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People like us don’t do Wal-Mart. The very name conjures retrograde rednecks, and the company’s M.O.— it’s sexism, anti-unionism, low wages, insufficient health care, foreign product sourcing, adverse environmental practices, and toxic impact on local businesses—has made its moniker synonymous with free-market blight. But people like us sometimes miss the obvious, which is why we’ve been on the losing side of American politics for 40-plus years. Snookered by the Southern strategy, reamed by the Reagan revolution, cowed by the Christian Right and whacked by WMDs, we hope that Barack Obama is the change we can believe in. But we’re still missing an analysis we can understand. Sadly, without that piece, no change is secure since progressives need to understand what went wrong—as well as how and why we’ve been ignorant of and alienated from the main currents in American life.
Reviewer: Diane Winston

Bethany Moreton, Ph.D. is a professor at the University of Georgia.

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In this my personal Christian blog, I hope to be discursive and now and then critical. What I write here is tentative and tensive. I post thoughts, feelings, and observations somewhat randomly and often in immediate response to current events and posts on other blogs.

"Serendipitous Creativity" from Gordon Kaufman

"I suggested that what we today should regard as God is the ongoing creativity in the universe - the bringing (or coming) into being of what is genuinely new, something transformative; …

"In some respects and some degrees this creativity is apparently happening continuously, in and through the processes or activities or events around us and within us(…) is a profound mystery to us humans(…) But on the whole, as we look back on the long and often painful developments that slowly brought human life and our complex human worlds into being, we cannot but regard this creativity as serendipitous …

"I want to stress that this serendipitous creativity - God! - to which we should be responsive is not the private possession of any of the many particular religious faiths or systems …

"This profound mystery of creativity is manifest in and through the overall human bio-historical evolution and development everywhere on the planet; and it continues to show itself throughout the entire human project, no matter what may be the particular religious and or cultural beliefs."

Gordon Kaufman, Mennonite Life, December 2005 vol. 60 no. 4

Melville is a rational man who

"Melville is a rational man who wants God to exist. He wants Him to exist for the same reasons we all do: to be our rescuer and appreciator, to act as a confidant in our moments of crisis and to give us reassurance that, over the horizon of our deaths, we will survive." (John Updike)

And that is a problem for me.

Fragmented Notions

Fragmented Notions
Copyright © 2007 Jean and Alexander Heard Library, Vanderbilt University

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