Eschatology and Space: The Lost Dimension in Theology Past and Present

Hardcover | October 2, 2012

byVítor Westhelle

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This unique volume focuses on the subjects of time in the area of theology known as "eschatology," the consideration of the fullness, the limit, and the goal of time. Westhelle's novel approach includes the role of place/space in eschatology alongside time. Considering one's spatial location in the understanding of time, he examines the influence of place and geographically-limited culture on eschatology and the contextual influence and limit culture has on one's understanding of eschatology. He traces the historical development of understandings of eschatology from the Bible to contemporary theology and adds his postcolonial/subaltern perspective. This is a fundamental reconsideration of what the theological categories of eschatology, apocalypse, and the end of time (both for the individual and the world in general) means in terms of biology, psychology, philosophy, sociology, politics, and geography.

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This unique volume focuses on the subjects of time in the area of theology known as "eschatology," the consideration of the fullness, the limit, and the goal of time. Westhelle's novel approach includes the role of place/space in eschatology alongside time. Considering one's spatial location in the understanding of time, he examines th...

Vítor Westhelle is professor of Systematic Theology at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:208 pages, 8.87 × 5.67 × 0.82 inPublished:October 2, 2012Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230110347

ISBN - 13:9780230110342

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Introduction
Region and Religion
Space, History, and the Kingdom
Eschatological Crisis and Renewal
Types of Eschatological Thinking
The Postcolonial Challenge
Dimensions of Liminality
Toward a Latitudinal Eschatology
Condemnation and Salvation: a Conclusion

Editorial Reviews

"This evocative and beautiful book constitutes a paradigm shift from the time and history to the space of theological geopolitics. Space is a dimension that has gone unnoticed under the hegemony of the Heilsgeschichte in theology, and Westhelle reveals why it is necessary to discover the importance of the tangential space of the border, the margin, the desert, the stranger, the eschaton (because the latter is also space: "The Promise Land"): the eutopia. Along the way he examines the themes of exteriority, foreignness, colonialism, and the space of the Other as periphery, with domination as the center. From the classic theology, theology of liberation, and the postcolonial up to G. Agamben, J. Taubes and W. Benjamin, the author covers several histories to give importance to choratic eschatology. We from the South and oppressed exteriority salute this pioneering work!" - Enrique Dussel, Emérito UAM-Iztapalapa /Mexico city"Eschatology and Space is the best book on theology that I've read in the past ten years. Westelle is right: starting with experience and vulnerability as spaces for divine revelation, he builds towards a new vision of eschatology in which salvation and condemnation are not only topics to ponder but rather realities that are already alive." - Elsa Tamez, professor at Latin American Biblical University, researcher at Ecumenical Department of Investigation (DEI), Costa Rica"This is Westhelle at his best! Westhelle overturns the near-absolute priority given to time over space in Christian eschatological thinking, demonstrating that such opposition is not biblical, but rather the outcome of a particularly western view of history. He makes the biblically and theologically persuasive case for 'latitudinal' eschatological categories such as crossing and place that can speak to migrants, the landless and all who experience the eschata at the margins today." - Barbara Rossing, author of The Rapture Exposed: The Message of Hope in the Book of Revelation"Until now Christian eschatology has been interpreted only in terms of its temporal dimension. Vitor Westhelle has undertaken a remarkably creative rethinking of this in terms of its spatial dimension through the effective deployment of post-colonial and post-structuralist perspectives. The book will be indispensable for all who are interested in understanding eschatology and exploring new possibilities of eschatological meaning." - Ted Jennings, professor of Biblical and Constructive Theology, Chicago Theological Seminary