• Paul S. Chung


This chapter introduces the extent to which critical theology is related to political theology and its ethical orientation in the aftermath of the Enlightenment. Rousseau and his social contract theory are chosen to be one of the important examples in critiquing the Enlightenment, as seen later in Weber’s critical analysis of purpose rationality and then critical theory of dialectic of Enlightenment (Horkheimer and Adorno). Given the critique of Enlightenment, progress, and colonialism, ethical theology within the context of political theology can be constructed along with critical theory. Political theology in this regard is best understood as a theological, ethical, philosophical, and sociological endeavor in dealing with the church’s engagement with public issues in a wider spectrum. For this direction, it is substantial to incorporate philosophical hermeneutics (hermeneutical realism) and critical theory of historical materialist inquiry into developing political discourse ethics. Critical theory is allied with political theology, and such a correlation is advanced in phenomenological theory of lifeworld and archeological theory of interpretation.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul S. Chung
    • 1
  1. 1.Lutheran School of Theology at ChicagoChicagoUSA

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