1st Edition

Developing Animal Theology
An Engagement with Leonardo Boff

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after October 28, 2021
ISBN 9781032052861
October 28, 2021 Forthcoming by Routledge
248 Pages

USD $160.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

This book offers an up-to-date examination of the nature and development of animal theology. It considers what animal theology is and how it challenges, and is challenged by, liberation and ecological theology. At the heart of the work is a critical engagement with the Brazilian ecotheologian Leonardo Boff. Clair Linzey addresses ideas that originate from the papal encyclical Laudato Si’ and considers how Pope Francis is developing an animal friendly tradition within Catholicism. Exploring new vistas in animal theology, this volume makes a valuable to contribution to debates on how religion should be concerned with animals and the environment. This book is essential reading for anyone who wants to know the current state of debate with animal theology and its effects on the wider Christian community.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction

What is animal theology?

a. The Triune God delights in differentiated being and so should we;

b. God’s own right as Creator establishes the rights of all sentient creatures;

c. In Christ God embraces the flesh of all sentient creatures;

d. In Christ God rejects the fallenness of the world and wills to create a new

heaven and earth;

e. The cross of Christ is the symbol of liberation of every creature suffering

from bondage. God in Christ is the face of suffering of the world;

f. God’s generosity in Christ necessitates the response of moral generosity.

Lordship should be expressed as service;

g. The life giving Spirit, source of all that is wonderful, animates every

creature. Approximating the Kingdom is empowered by the spirit.

Methodology and overview

Chapter 2: Boff and His Context

The significance of Boff’s journey

Animals in Catholic thought

Boff’s Brazilian context

Chapter 3: The Liberator Who Does Not Liberate Creation

A limited Christology

a. Anthropocentric redemption

b. A cosmic resurrection?

c. A limited kingdom

Building a more inclusive Christology

a. Incarnation as a being-for-others

b. Contextual interpretation of Jesus

c. Highlighting the periphery

Chapter 4: Fraternity Only with Humans

The neglect of Saint Francis’s concern for animals

a. Limited fraternity

b. Impoverished anthropocentrism

c. Interpreting Saint Francis’s relationship to animals

The Franciscan promise

a. Gentleness as an orientation to the world

b. Praxis as a refusal of domination

c. Fraternity with all creation

d. The poor and nonhuman creatures

Chapter 5: Cosmological Liberation without Animal Liberation

Ecology and the neglect of animals

a. Ecology and overdependence

b. All in God, God in all

c. Human uniqueness

d. Dominion and domination

e. Fallenness and violence

f. Whose right?

Eco-holism’s incompatibility with concern for animals

a. Ecological ethics versus animal ethics

b. Christologically limited

c. Who are the poor?

Chapter 6: A New Catholic Moral Sensitivity?

The tradition on animals post–Vatican II

A Latin American pope

a. Francis of Rome’s early teachings

b. Laudato Si’ (2015)

c. Echoes of Boff

Re-contextualising Boff in Brazil

Chapter 7: Towards a Trinitarian Theology of Animal Liberation

Boff’s Trinitarian thought

A Trinitarian theology of animal liberation

a. Communion as being "for" creation

b. Entering the Triune sight: To see as God sees

c. A Trinitarian model for our relationships with animals

Why animal theology matters in Brazil

An unfinished journey

Chapter 8: Conclusions

An Agenda for the Future


1. Questions to Professor Leonardo Boff

2. Sample Interview Questions

3. Excerpts from Professor Luiz Carlos Susin Interview

4. Excerpts from Professor Jung Mo Sung Interview

5. Excerpts from Professor Claudio de Oliveira Ribeiro Interview

6. Excerpts from Dr Carlos Frederico Ramos de Jesus Interview

7. Excerpts from Dr Bruno Garrote Interview

8. Excerpts from Professor Daniel Braga Lourenço Interview

9. Excerpts from Dr Carlos Naconecy Interview

10. Excerpts from Felinos du Campus, PUC Group Interview

View More



Clair Linzey is Deputy Director of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, and Professor of Animal Theology at the Graduate Theological Foundation.


"With the stellar quality of this book, Clair Linzey further establishes herself as an exceptional scholar in the field of animal theology. She is not simply following in her father’s prestigious footsteps. She is blazing new trails." Ryan Patrick McLaughlin, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and Theology, College of Saint Elizabeth, and Assistant Editor, Biblical Theology Bulletin