The Cross: The Slow Violence of Gentlemen and the Wisdom of Self-Giving Love
This chapter turns to Paul’s account of the crucified Christ to consider the political aspects of this path to wisdom. In light of liberation readings of the Cross, Christ’s unjust execution uncovers a violent order that is often dressed in refinement and prestige. For these prudent managers, Christ’s way of life is foolishness. But Christ’s wisdom shows the deep foolishness and callousness, not just of governors and soldiers, but on Paul’s account, of sages, debaters, and scribes. Paul’s wide-ranging critique of the wisdom of the world points us toward slower forms of violence—like environmental racism—that issue from the power that resonates between the learned and the rich, between universities and corporations.