Church, Community and Power by Roy Kearsley

By Roy Kearsley

Within the period of 'post-Christendom', how can church as a sociological fact be switched directly to the damaging risks, but positive chances, of 'power' flowing in and round its group? Attuned to the present mistrust of church energy, this booklet creatively works out responses which can flip painful censure right into a revisioning of church energy kinfolk, helped through missed severe experiences. The procedure exposes a complexity to energy, and filters that perception right into a theology of church. a lot realization is paid within the ebook to the relevance to a spiritual group of post-modern thinker Michel Foucault and of modern feminism.The subject of energy has common significance within the research of faith, notwithstanding the reaction to research and critique during this ebook is drawn particularly from Christian assets. Kearsley concludes with an exploration for a destiny renovated, self-critical, real and becoming group, delicate to energy whereas final in accordance with vintage Christianity.

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First, Arendt’s descriptions of ‘power with’, namely community power underlying centralized power, has a generic appeal. It plausibly describes what happens in any local setting and illuminates power patterns in such settings. For here it would indeed be true that any credible power would usually spring from a community of consent – energy through synergy. Of course, here too political strategies and smart moves by an influential activist minority could frustrate for a while the wishes of most members of the community.

20 Clegg, p. 133. 21 Clegg, p. 239. Clegg is approving. Perhaps indeed he was even claiming postmodern credentials such as those which marked Foucault’s era. Mark Haugaard, Structures, Restructuration and Social Power (Aldershot, 1992), p. 57. Haugaard, however, is suspicious of Clegg’s claim to be postmodernist, holding that instead he has merely swapped some labels about. See pp. 57–9. 18 The Contested Concept. What is Power? 31 And yet this formidable ‘power over’ was not the only form of achieving intended effects over another.

66 Lawrence D. Kritzman, ‘Introduction: Foucault and the Politics of Experience’, in Lawrence D. ), Michel Foucault: Politics, Philosophy, Culture: Interviews and Other Writings (New York, 1988), i–xxv, p. ix. Church, Community and Power 42 served Foucault as a microcosm of civil surveillance generally and for the practice of self-surveillance. Through such internalized practice of self-scrutiny, the body became the site of domination and normalization. We shall return to these radical ideas later.

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