1st Edition

Disciplining the Divine Toward an (Im)political Theology

By Paul Fletcher Copyright 2009

    Disciplining the Divine offers the first comprehensive treatment of the Social Model of the Trinity, exploring its central place within much theological discourse of the past half century, including its relation to wider cultural and political concerns. The book highlights the manner in which theologians have attempted to make the doctrine of God relevant to modern issues and outlooks and it charts the conditions that have necessitated such a reconfiguration of theological analysis. While interrogatory in tone and intent, Disciplining the Divine nevertheless provides a critical reconstruction of a Christian theology and practice which might be undertaken within the political and cultural contexts of the new millennium.

    Contents: Foreword; Preface; Introduction: the dislocation of theology; Part I Modelling: Trinitarian formulae; Trinitarian concessions. Part II Identifying: Trinitarian persons; The question of anthropology. Part III Living: Trinitarian politics; The political ideal. Part IV End Matters: or the Matter of the End: Anatopism; End matters: towards a theological politics; Bibliography; Index.


    Paul Fletcher was formerly Lecturer in Christian Studies in the Department of Religious Studies at Lancaster University. As well as writing within the context of theology and philosophical theology, he has also published in political theory and cultural theory.

    In this insightful book, Paul Fletcher provides a critical overview of the status of political theology today, as well as a thorough refutation of the social model of the Trinity. Written with the clarity that derives from long experience of teaching on this subject, Fletcher provides a most engaging suggestion for the future of political theology. Philip Goodchild, Head of Theology and Religious Studies, Nottingham University Paul Fletcher was one of Britain's most acute and culturally engaged theologians, a passionate interrogator of theology, philosophy and critical theory. In this book, his passion and wonderfully informed, devastating incision, lives on, as it is brought to bear on social models of the Trinity, in particular that of Jürgen Moltmann. Gerard Loughlin, Professor of Theology, Durham University ’This is an extraordinary book which challenges one of the most commonly-held assumptions of modern doctrine, that somehow the relationships between the persons of the Trinity have some relevance for how we organise our social relationships in politics and the church.’ Modern Believing