This is an exploration of the religious aspects of Habermas' philosophy and the response from theology. With his theory of communicative rationality, Jurgen Habermas has been one of the most influential social philosophers of the 20th century and a major dialogue partner for theology in the different stages of his work. Systematic Theology and ecclesiology, Practical and Moral Theology as well as Religious Education have offered creative receptions and astute critiques. The book explores the origins of Habermas' thinking from the Critical Theory of the first generation of the Frankfurt School to his turn from the philosophy of consciousness to language, and to the development of his theories of the public sphere, of law, and democracy. The philosophical critiques of his work that are relevant for theology are explained before the successive phases of his view of religion are traced: supercessionism, coexistence, and finally co-operation in offering specific resources and shared criteria for public debate on the future directions of a technologically shaped pluralist culture.
"The Philosophy and Theology" series looks at major philosophers and explores their relevance to theological thought as well as the response of theology.
Maureen Junker-Kenny is Associate Professor of Theology at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.
Part One; Part Two; I. The origins of Habermas's thinking; II. Habermas's theory of communicative action in philosophical debate; III. Phases in the relationship of communicative reason to religion; Part Three; IV. Reception in the theological disciplines; V. Theological critiques; VI. Theological themes; Conclusion.