books

A Fun Book List

I’ve compiled a list of books that aims for a range from semi-popular to semi-technical covering systematics, bible, ethics, politics, history, and even a couple novels. The purpose is to be a bit of a challenge, but not too much, I suppose. This list is meant to be combined with other lists for an organization that has been asked for a list of books they find interesting, helpful, etc.

Please let me know of any books you think should be included. For instance, I don’t have many books by women and only a few books on race, economics, and media. And now in the order I pulled the books off my shelves:

Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the God of Israel
Jacques Ellul, The Technological Society
Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death
Gerhard Lohfink, Jesus and Community
Anthony Kelly, Eschatology and Hope
Lieven Boeve, God Interrupts History: Theology in a Time of Upheaval
Johann Baptist Metz, The Emergent Church
Johann Baptist Metz, Faith in History and Society: Toward a Practical Fundamental Theology
Jon Sobrino, No Salvation Outside the Poor: Prophetic-Utopian Essays

Archbishop Oscar Romero, Voice of the Voiceless: The Four Pastoral Letters and Other Statements
Thomas S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions
Leo Tolstoy, The Kingdom of God is Within You
George Lindbeck,
Leslie Newbigin,
Bishop Kallistos Ware, The Orthodox Way
James Cone, Risks of Faith
Ivan Petrella, The Future of Liberation Theology
Alain Epp Weaver, States of Exile: Visions of Diaspora, Witness, and Return

Chris Heubner, A Precarious Peace: Yoderian Explorations on Theology, Knowledge, and Identity
Tripp York, The Purple Crown: The Politics of Martyrdom
Richard Church, First be Reconciled: Challenging Christians in the Courts
Philip Dray, At the Hands of Persons Unknown
Stanley Hauerwas, A Community of Character
Stanley Hauerwas, The Hauerwas Reader
Richard Hays, The Moral Vision of the New Testament
Emilio Gentile, Politics as Religion
Rowan Williams, On Christian Theology
Albert J. Raboteau, A Fire in the Bones: Reflections on African-American Religious History

Michael Budde and Robert Brimlow, Christianity Incorporated
J. Kameron Carter, Race: A Theological Account
William Cavanaugh, Torture and Eucharist
William Cavanaugh, Theopolitical Imagination
G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy
Lee Griffith, The War on Terrorism and the Terror of God
Nathan Kerr, Christ, History, and the Apocalyptic
Arthur McGill, Death and Life
Thomas Merton, Love and Living
Kevin Vanhoozer,

Cornel West, Race Matters
N. T. Wright,
John Howard Yoder, The Politics of Jesus
John Howard Yoder, The Priestly Kingdom
C. S. Lewis, The Great Divorce
Chaim Potok, The Chosen
Glen H. Stassen and David P. Gushee, Kingdom Ethics: Following Jesus in Contemporary Context
Daniel Izuzquiza, Rooted in Jesus Christ: Toward a Radical Ecclesiology
Gabriel Santos, Redeeming the Broken Body: Church and State After Disaster
Ed. Brent Laytham, God is Not: Religious, Nice, “One of Us,” An American, A Capitalist

Below are books of promise that I haven’t gotten to:
John Colwell, The Rhythm of Doctrine
Ed. by Randi Rashkover and C. C. Pecknold, Liturgy, Time, and the Politics of Redemption
Ed. By Meg Cox, Cynicism and Hope: Reclaiming Discipleship in a Postdemocratic Society
Ed. Brent Laytham, God Does Not…: Entertain, Play Matchmaker, Hurry, Demand Blood, Cure Every Illness

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10 thoughts on “A Fun Book List

  1. Katie Grimes says:

    Elizabeth Johnson’s “She Who Is” and “Truly our Sister”
    Elixabeth Schussler Fiorenza “Jesus: Miriam’s Child, Sophia’s Prophet”
    James Cone “Black Theology and Black Power” “A Black Theology of Liberation”
    Kameron J. Carter: “Race: A Theological Account”
    Emilie Townes “Womanist Ethics and the Cultural Production of Evil”

    • I have read most of those books Katie and I like them quite a lot. If I was constructing a list for academics, I would certainly put those in, however, I am trying to make this list available for lay people. I know Carter’s book isn’t very accessible for lay people, Townes maybe, the Cone books you meantion are somewhat, and Johnson’s She Who Is kinda but not really. The other two I have not read. This is why I chose Cone’s Risks of Faith — it is very readable, you get pretty much most of his project, and it is diverse in subject. I only wish other books on the list could be as good as his. If you have any popular treatments of the same positions to Townes, Johnson, Fiorenza, et. al. please voice them.

      I thought of Sexism and God-talk but I’m unsure about that being accessible as well.

  2. dave says:

    I don’t know whether this book fits the criteria or not, but a good one to include, I suppose in the same vein as Postman, is The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan.

    Another resource I would recommend is The Other Journal, although it obviously isn’t a book.

  3. Jennie says:

    Just stumbled across your blog and have so far enjoyed what I’ve seen.

    I would recommend “Katie’s Canon” by Katie G. Cannon (yes it’s an intended pun) as a fairly accessible look at a black woman’s analysis of racism, sexism, and classism in theology. Or perhaps “Sisters in the Wilderness” by Delores S. Williams. Either way I was happy to see that you included black liberation theologians but think your listed could be further shaped by including some womanists!

    • I agree, more womanists. The problem is that all the womanists I read at Union were a higher level of writing, it seemed. I had never read Katie’s Canon, although I have read some of her stuff, but I’ll be sure to look it up. I forgot to look back at Williams book, it was in my stack to include but double-check-the-writing-to-see-if-its-on-a-popular-reading-level. I admit, it got lost in the stack. My oversight.

  4. I think I would add the following to the list:

    David Ford, The Shape of Living
    Robert Jenson, Story and Promise
    Lesslie Newbigin, The Other Side of 1984
    Tom Wright, Simply Christian

  5. If you need a good Womanist text that will be “more accessible,” there is always Alice Walker’s The Color Purple — in fact, many Womanists would protest its exclusion from their “canon” I would think.

    • That is very true, it is one of the foundational texts. I was also thinking of Beloved by another first generation Womanist, Toni Morrison. But I also hope to find some popular level theological texts by some Womanists — I realize the method of Womanists is one of narrative, but popular level theological ruminations on the narratives would be helpful for some. Also, some black feminists (there is a difference!) would be helpful as well. So if you know of any, let me know.

  6. More Ellul, especially The Subversion of Christianity; Politics of God and Politics of Man; The Presence of the Kingdom; and The Ethics of Freedom — but almost everything he wrote could go on your list.

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