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Bartolomé de las Casas, O.P.

History, Philosophy, and Theology in the Age of European Expansion

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Edited by David Thomas Orique O.P. and Rady Roldán-Figueroa

Bartolomé de las Casas, O.P.: History, Philosophy, and Theology in the Age of European Expansion marks a critical point in Lascasian scholarship. The result of the collaborative work of seventeen prominent scholars, contributions span the fields of history, Latin American studies, literary criticism, philosophy and theology. The volume offers to specialists and non-specialists alike access to a rich and thoughtful overview of nascent colonial Latin American and early modern Iberian studies in a single text.

Contributors: Rolena Adorno; Matthew Restall; David Thomas Orique, O.P.; Rady Roldán-Figueroa; Carlos A. Jáuregui; David Solodkow; Alicia Mayer; Claus Dierksmeier; Daniel R. Brunstetter; Víctor Zorrilla; Luis Fernando Restrepo; David Lantigua; Ramón Darío Valdivia Giménez; Eyda M. Merediz; Laura Dierksmeier; Guillaume Candela, and Armando Lampe.

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Edited by Ines G. Županov and Pierre Antoine Fabre

The Rites Controversies in the Early Modern World is a collection of fourteen articles focusing on debates concerning the nature of “rites” raging in intellectual circles of Europe, Asia and America in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The controversy started in Jesuit Asian missions where the method of accommodation, based on translation of Christianity into Asian cultural idioms, created a distinction between civic and religious customs. Civic customs were defined as those that could be included into Christianity and permitted to the new converts. However, there was no universal consensus among the various actors in these controversies as to how to establish criteria for distinguishing civility from religion. The controversy had not been resolved, but opened the way to radical religious scepticism.

Contributors are: Claudia Brosseder, Michela Catto, Gita Dharampal-Frick, Pierre Antoine Fabre, Ana Carolina Hosne, Ronnie Po-Chia Hsia, Giuseppe Marcocci, Ovidiu Olar, Sabina Pavone, István Perczel, Nicholas Standaert, Margherita Trento, Guillermo Wilde and Ines G. Županov.

Translating Catechisms, Translating Cultures

The Expansion of Catholicism in the Early Modern World

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Edited by Antje Flüchter and Rouven Wirbser

Translating Catechisms, Translating Cultures explores the dimensions of early modern transcultural Christianities; the leeway of religious negotiation in and outside of Europe by comparing catechisms and their translation in the context of several Jesuit missionary strategies. The volume challenges the often assumed paramount Europeanness of Western Christianity. In the early modern period the idea of Tridentine Catholicism was translated into many different regions where it was appropriated and adopted to local conditions. Missionary work always entails translation, linguistic as well as cultural, which results in a modification of the content. Catechisms were central instruments to communicate Christian belief and, therefore, they are central media for all kinds of translation processes. The comparative approach (including China, India, Japan, Ethiopia, Northern America and England) enables the evaluation of different factors like power relations, social differentiation, cultural patterns, gender roles etc.

Contributors are: Takao Abé, Anand Amaladass, Leonhard Cohen, Renate Dürr, Antje Flüchter, Ana Hosne, Giulia Nardini, John Ødemark, John Steckley, Alexandra Walsham, Rouven Wirbser.

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Girolamo Imbruglia

The Jesuit Missions of Paraguay and a Cultural History of Utopia (1568–1789) explores the religious foundations of the Jesuit missions in Paraguay, and the discussion of the missionary experience in the public opinion of early modern Europe, from Montaigne to Diderot. This book presents a wealth of documentation to highlight three key aspects of this debate: the relationship between civilisation and religion, between religion and political imagination, and between utopia and history. Girolamo Imbruglia's analysis of the Jesuits' own narrative reveals that the idea and the practice of mission have been one of the essential features of the European identity, and of the shaping modern political thought.


Reading the Bible across Contexts

Luke’s Gospel, Socio-Economic Marginality, and Latin American Biblical Hermeneutics

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Esa J. Autero

In Reading the Bible Across Contexts Esa Autero offers a fresh perspective on Luke’s poverty texts. In addition to an historical reading, he conducted an empirical investigation of two Latin American Bible reading groups – one poor and the other affluent – to shed light on Luke’s poverty texts. The interaction between historical reading and present-day readings demonstrates the impact of socio-economic status on biblical hermeneutics and sheds new light on Luke’s views on wealth and poverty. At the same time Esa Autero critically examines liberation theologian’s claim that poor are privileged biblical interpreters.

David du Plessis and the Assemblies of God

The Struggle for the Soul of a Movement

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Joshua R. Ziefle

In David du Plessis and the Assemblies of God Joshua R. Ziefle details the complicated tensions that arose during the Charismatic Movement of the 1960s and 1970s. He highlights the story of Pentecostal missionary David du Plessis, whose deep involvement in every area of the revival illustrates the tenor of the movement and the controversies it engendered.

Du Plessis’s ejection from the ministerial ranks of the Assemblies of God over his continued involvement with non-Pentecostals and the denomination’s slow but steady rapprochement with the ecumenism of the Charismatic Movement are important themes in this monograph. Ultimately, Ziefle argues that both du Plessis’s enthusiastic embrace of charismatics and the Assemblies’ own hesitant approach to Spirit-filled Roman Catholics and mainline Protestants represent persistent hallmarks of Pentecostalism.

The Frontier Mission and Social Transformation in Western Honduras

The Order of Our Lady of Mercy, 1525-1773

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Nancy Johnson Black

The Frontier Mission and Social Transformation in Western Honduras deals with the interaction between Mercedarian missionaries and the indigenous Lenca Indian population of western Honduras during the early sixteenth to mid-eighteenth centuries. Using an anthropological perspective, it relies heavily on previously neglected ecclesiastical archival material in conjunction with preliminary archaeological evidence as an integral source of data.
A fine-grained description of the local processes of missionization in a frontier region examines the organization, operation and goals of the Mercedarian mission province located in the colonial Audiencia of Guatemala. Summary data concerning aspects of Lenca society and physical environment relevant to investigation of mission activities are provided.
The importance of this study lies in its ability to explain mission development in frontier settings as well as to trace transformations within a mission order over almost a 250-year period.