Even though theology and Critical Race Theory (CRT) have yet to partner with one another in earnest, neo-Calvinism of the Kuyperian variety shares with CRT some important commitments. Kuyper and CRT both problematize liberalism. For Kuyper, French Revolutionary liberalism was a humanistic revolt against the God from whom originate individual freedoms and before whom all people stand as equals. For CRT, legal liberalism and constitutionalism purport to guarantee the rights of individuals, but far more often fail to enfranchise the weaker parties in society. Their shared critique is no solution. However, CRT’s insistence on race-consciousness is a major contribution to what would otherwise be Kuyperian abstract-ness. In turn, theology offers mature reflection on anthropology as well as eschatology that would otherwise not appear in CRT. Bavinck’s doctrine of the image of God grounds race-consciousness in a future where the human community of covenant promise is richly and concretely diverse.
Peter Paris“The African and African-American Understanding of Our Common Humanity: A Critique of Abraham Kuyper’s Anthropology,” in Religion Pluralism and Public Life Abraham Kuyper’s Legacy for the Twenty-First Centuryed. Luis E. Lugo (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans2000) 268.
Russel Botman“Is Blood Thicker Than Justice? The Legacy of Abraham Kuyper for South Africa,” in Religion Pluralism and Public Life Abraham Kuyper’s Legacy for the Twenty-First Centuryed. Luis E. Lugo (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans2000) 358.
See Kimberlé CrenshawCritical Race Theory: The Key Writings That Formed the Movement (New York: New Press1995). See also Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic Critical Race Theory: The Cutting Edge (Philadelphia: Temple University Press 2013). Whether these three consider themselves theologians is unclear but Anthony E. Cook Kenneth Prewitt and Harlon L. Dalton are all legal scholars who have done theological work at divinity schools. Dalton is an ordained episcopal priest.
Michael Hollerich“Catholic Anti-Liberalism in Weimar: Political Theology and Its Critics,” in The Weimar Moment: Liberalism Political Theology and Lawed. Leonard V. Kaplan and Rudy Koshar (Lanham: Lexington Books2011) 23.
Eric Tranby and Douglas Hartmann“Critical Whiteness Theories and the Evangelical “Race Problem”: Extending Emerson and Smith’s Divided by Faith,”Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion47 no. 3 (2008).
Russel Botman“The Church Partitioned or the Church Reconciled? South Africa’s Historical and Theological Dilemma,” in Race and Reconciliation in South Africa: A Multicultural Dialogue in Comparative Perspectiveed. William E. Van Vugt and Daan Cloete (Lanham: Lexington Books2000) 107–108.