Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Woodward Theological Society lecture series

More news out of Detroit... the Woodward Theological Society is about to start its lecture series, "designed to highlight local and regional scholarship, to promote theological discussions in Metro Detroit, and to network interested individuals together."  Their first lecturer will be Mary Healy S.T.D., who will speak on May 7th on "The Hermeneutic of Jesus".  From the website: "Her talk, The Hermeneutic of Jesus, argues for a Christological reading of the Old Testament taking a detailed look at Jesus’ own manner of interpreting the Old Testament in the Gospel of Mark."

You can find more information about the lecture series, Dr. Healy, and a flyer for the event at the WTS website.  Be sure to also poke around and read their previous interviews with James K.A. Smith and  J. Todd Billings.  Thanks to Mike Dagle and Dean Simmer for all of the work that they're doing for theological training in the Detroit area.

Monday, April 11, 2011

News on my brother...

This isn't theology related, but I thought I'd take a chance to brag about some of my brother's recent academic-related work.  He's putting me to shame lately.

First, Daniel was accepted into the doctoral program for economics at American University earlier this spring, and he'll be leaving his current research post at the Urban Institute to start there this fall.  As if that wasn't enough, a paper he published last fall critiquing some recent articles on the 1920-1921 depression was picked up by Paul Krugman (it has also received a good deal of attention elsewhere already, mostly within Austrian circles that are the target of his critique). 

Finally, just the other day Daniel was invited to be on the board of advisers for the Critical Review, which seems (just my general sense of it- I'm not familiar with the journal) to be a venue for discussion of politics, economics, and society that is "academic" but directed more towards public intellectual conversation than the more insular specialist work.

Since I'll botch a description of Daniel's work, I'll just cut-and-paste from his own description

I am on the macroeconomics track, and plan on doing field work in labor economics and either monetary economics or econometrics. My research interests include job and worker flows, the business cycle, the science and engineering workforce, labor market policy evaluation, the history of economic thought, and American economic history. I'm still getting a sense of what I want to write my dissertation on, but I'm interested in working on the role that hiring and separation plays in wage adjustment. Recent work by Robert Shimer has supported the idea that wage rigidity plays an important role in the business cycle. What interests me is the question of how firms respond to wage rigidity, and whether worker turnover is a wage adjustment strategy when firms are constrained in modifying existing labor contracts. I'm also interested in learning more about the sort of shocks that Shimer looks at, and perhaps look into demand shocks, financial market shocks, etc. if these are neglected.  It's a body of work I need to look into more and think more about. 

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Wolterstorff & O'Donovan at Chicago

I'm doing a bad job of keeping up with local lecture events. I only just now found out that John Webster was at Wheaton this Tuesday for a talk.

Do note, though, that the theology workshop and the ethics club at the University of Chicago are hosting Nicholas Wolterstorff and Oliver O'Donovan next Thursday for a dialogue on “Justice and Love in the Christian Tradition.” The event is free and open to the public, so not to be missed.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Invitation for prospective Div School students...

I was reminded that this Friday is Prospective Students' Day at the University of Chicago Divinity School.  As April 15th draws near we're hosting those students who have been accepted so they can see Swift Hall, meet faculty and students, and hopefully make the decision to stick around for a graduate program if the school seems right for them.  During the last Prospective Students' Day I was happy to meet a student or two who were readers of this blog, and I thought I'd speak up ahead of time this year in case any readers will be visiting this Friday.  I'll be around during the day and would love to meet you!  There's usually some relatively open time in the afternoon, and I'll buy you a coffee (or early... I do mornings and I'm free until 9).  Just email me.

I don't think UChicago has the critical mass of theology bloggers that places like Princeton, Notre Dame, Duke, or Marquette do, so I try to bring attention to the program as much as possible.  With any luck I've convinced a few of you to apply along the way. 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Forthcoming books by Kevin Hector

Some news about a few of Kevin Hector's book projects has shown up.  A little while back I mentioned his introduction to Schleiermacher's Speeches on Religion, and unfortunately T&T Clark seems to have pushed the publication date for this project to November 2012.  Some better news is that Cambridge has posted some details of his Theology Without Metaphysics, to be released in their Current Issues in Theology series later this year.  Prof. Hector also has a project with a tentative title of Modernism as a Theological Problem that hasn't surfaced yet on any publisher websites to my knowledge.  You can also find a book titled On God-Talk listed in various places, but I'm guessing that this is the same as what has now become Theology Without Metaphysics (Prof. Hector can correct me on this if I'm mistaken).

Following is the description of Theology Without Metaphysics given on the Cambridge website.  You can find a more extensive discussion from Prof. Hector in his 2009 interview with Circa.
One of the central arguments of post-metaphysical theology is that language is inherently 'metaphysical' and consequently that it shoehorns objects into predetermined categories. Because God is beyond such categories, it follows that language cannot apply to God. Drawing on recent work in theology and philosophy of language, Kevin Hector develops an alternative account of language and its relation to God, demonstrating that one need not choose between fitting God into a metaphysical framework, on the one hand, and keeping God at a distance from language, on the other. Hector thus elaborates a 'therapeutic' response to metaphysics: given the extent to which metaphysical presuppositions about language have become embedded in common sense, he argues that metaphysics can be fully overcome only by defending an alternative account of language and its application to God, so as to strip such presuppositions of their apparent self-evidence and release us from their grip.