Fragments for Fractured Times
What Feminist Practical Theology Brings to the Table
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If ever a period of time felt 'fractured' it is now. Whichever way we turn, we witness the dismembering and fracturing of many previously taken for granted realities, with maps and borders - physical and metaphorical - being redrawn before our eyes. What place for the feminist practical theologian in such a climate?
In Fragments for Fractured Times, one of the world's leading feminist practical theologians, Nicola Slee, brings together 15 years of papers, articles, talks and sermons, many of them previously unpublished. Collected from diverse times, places, settings and occasions, Slee offers an introduction to each fragment, "holding it up to the light and examining its size, shape, texture and pattern".
Drawing on a wide and diverse range of her writing, Slee demonstrates the richness and variety of feminist practical theological writing. What feminist theology brings to the table of scholarly thinking and embodied practice is, she suggests, something creative, artful, prophetic as well as playful - a resource for Christian living and thinking in fractured times.
"Pre-eminent poet-practical theologian Nicola Slee has gathered a beautiful collage of writings filled with wisdom wrestled from life. At once prayerful and scholarly, these essays deepen faith and broaden religious understanding. A stellar contribution to the discipline and an immense gift to wider conversations about theology and the spiritual life." -- Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore, Vanderbilt University
"This important collection brings together things that long to be together but are too often kept apart. So spirituality reshapes research, liturgy invades the lecture room, desiring is reconciled to conceptualising and the long estrangement of theology from poetics is ended. It takes radical vision, stubborn faith and nurturing love to achieve this miracle. Nicola Slee’s rare gifts enable it to happen." -- Heather Walton, Glasgow University, UK
“Few theologians write so beautifully about brokenness and so faithfully about fragments as Nicola Slee. She has the gift of seeing – landscapes, art, human encounters – and probing their deeper meanings. She hears the voices of the marginalised and understands them to be central to God. She turns the seemingly unspeakable into prophetic poetry. This collection is not some industrially processed theological fastfood. Nicola Slee presents a table full of theological tapas – artisanal, seasonal, and local – to be savoured and inspired.” --Ruard Ganzevoort, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
"Nicola Slee has written a book for such a time as this. Fragments for Fractured Times names the spiritual struggle to live well in the midst of the multiple and overwhelming crises of our day, crises which are at once personal, social, political, and ecological. With honesty and poetry, Slee describes an embodied and engaged spirituality. Pleasure and pain, love and fear, prayer and rest, witness and standing, research and writing, presence and emptiness all become spiritual practices. Here is a feminist practical theologian daring to speak her own truth. As Slee writes of Christa, “She is gathering her power.” Read these fragments slowly, so that they can inspire your own transformative spiritual quest." -- Mary Clark Moschella, Yale University School of Divinity
"For anyone seeking to understand the interface between feminist theologies of liberation, qualiative research and poetic theological reflection, Fragments for Fractured Times is a must read!" -- Anthony G. Reddie, Director of the Oxford Centre for Religion and Culture, Regent's Park College
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