This comprehensive volume provides crucial insights from contemporary academics and practitioners into how positive interventions might be made into post-secular political spaces that have emerged in the wake of the economic, political, and social upheavals of the 2008 global financial crisis. The failure of liberal democracy to deal effectively with such challenges has led to scapegoating of the poor, immigrants, and Muslims, and contributed to the populist electoral success of, among others, the Leave campaign during the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, and Donald Trump’s Presidential campaign. These shocks have highlighted contemporary political spaces defined by what has been termed ‘all the posts’: postmodern, post-Christendom, post-liberal, post-political, and post-secular.
This collection examines emerging attempts to understand and advance the cause of wellbeing within this context. The authors address a variety of key issues including: (re)configuring mythologies for the common good; deploying love and friendship politically; motivating new social movements; valuing the other; recovering displaced and devalued political narratives; finding alternatives to the previously dominant neo-liberalism; listening deeply for social transformation; and overcoming adversarial party politics.
This book was originally published online as a special issue of the journal Global Discourse.
1. Introduction: Cultivating new post-secular political space
Roger Haydon Mitchell
2. Beyond populist politics: why conventional politics needs to conjure myths of its own and why it struggles to do so
3. Between radical orthodoxy and the turn to the empirical: a reply to Stacey
4. What are the politics of love?
Roger Haydon Mitchell
5. Examining self-love, love of the ‘other’ and love of the ‘enemy’: a reply to Mitchell
6. Friendship and the new politics: beyond community
Astrid H.M. Nordin and Graham M. Smith
7. Friendship in politics, community, populism and liberalism: a response to Nordin and Smith
8. The decay of Western liberalism and the Christological alternative
Benjamin J. Wood
9. The decay of western liberalism and the christological alternative: a reply to Ben Wood
10. Love your enemy? An aesthetic discourse analysis of self-transcendence in values-motivated altruism
Sue Mitchell and Francisco Jose Eiroa-Orosa
11. Carving a dialogical epistemology for investigating altruism: A reply to Mitchell and Eiroa–Orosa
Hannah Intezar and Paul Sullivan
12. Transcending the tribalism of the culture wars spectrum
13. Neo-Gnosticism, ideology and the culture wars: the contemplative antidote – perennial tensions: a reply to Jersak
Ron S. Dart
14. State-led security responses and violent extremism: a comparative analysis of Libya, Egypt and Tunisia