Welcome to Seditious Theology!
Over the past decade or so, I have slowly been fusing my interest in popular culture with my interest in theology. The driving force behind this has been to see quite how they relate to each other and whether, in turn, they may reveal fresh ways of looking at both.
I confess that I have been lucky in that I have been able to pursue my interests from three perspectives; in my working life, with my friends and within an academic environment.
My time at St Andrews University in The Institute Of Theology, Imagination And the Arts gave me the opportunity to focus on writing a M.Litt. Dissertation and then a Ph.D. The doctorate was entitled, ‘Seditious Theology: Imaginative Re-identification, Punk and the Ministry of Jesus’. I then took this and converted it into a more accessible version which was published by Ashgate Publishing under the title, ‘Seditious Theology: Punk and the Ministry of Jesus’.
Essentially, I invested the first half of the work exploring the British punk movement of the 1970s and looked at its graphic language, sartorial statements, musical expression, lyrical language, gender, cultural and national relationships before exploring just what punk was and the degree to which we can see its progeny today. I kept a keen eye open for any theological points of contact I could discern, and parked them for exploration in Part Two. What followed was a careful look at the words and works of Christ in the light of what I had uncovered in Part One. The image I constructed of Christ was one whereby we could understand him as not simply subversive, but seditious. Hence, Seditious Theology.
I have been enormously gratified by the number of encouragements I have received to continue this work. Perhaps lacking conviction – and in any case distracted by life in general – I have only published a handful of postings over the last couple of years. However, I have concluded that I need to return to where the work started; within the sphere of post-war Britain and the expressions to be found within popular culture and sub-cultures more widely. This encompasses everything from music, lyrics, clothes, art, graphics and relationships – and who knows what else?
While the work was ‘birthed’ in an academic context I will not be writing primarily for that audience. My aim is to keep things comprehensible for all! I’m also heading each post either 7″ or 12″ so readers can tell whether it’s a quick thought pointing to something bigger or a fuller exploration of a subject.
Anyway, I do hope you enjoy it and please don’t be afraid to leave a comment, make a suggestion or even suggest a post.
The flower in the dustbin no longer…