Fortress Press

The Executed God: The Way of the Cross in Lockdown America, Second Edition

The Executed God

The Way of the Cross in Lockdown America, Second Edition

Mark Lewis Taylor (Author)


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The new edition of Mark Lewis Taylor’s award-winning The Executed God is both a searing indictment of the structures of “Lockdown America” and a visionary statement of hope. It is also a call for action to Jesus followers to resist US imperial projects and power. Outlining a “theatrics of state terror,” Taylor identifies and analyzes its instruments—mass incarceration, militarized police tactics, surveillance, torture, immigrant repression, and capital punishment—through which a racist and corporatized Lockdown America enforces in the United States a global neoliberal economic and political imperialism.

Against this, The Executed God proposes a “counter-theatrics to state terror,” a declamation of the way of the cross for Jesus followers that unmasks the powers of US state domination and enacts an adversarial politics of resistance, artful dramatic actions, and the building of peoples’ movements. These are all intrinsic to a Christian politics of remembrance of the Jesus executed by empire.

Heralded in its first edition, this new edition is thoroughly revised, updated, and expanded, offering a demanding rethinking and recreating of what being a Christian is and of how Christianity should dream, hope, mobilize, and act to bring about what Taylor terms “a liberating material spirituality” to unseat the state that kills.    

  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9781451492675
  • eBook ISBN 9781506401454
  • Dimensions 6 x 9
  • Pages 558
  • Publication Date November 1, 2015


"The first edition of this superb book brilliantly deconstructed a gathering nightmare of state vengeance and oppression. Now that we have social movements taking on the nightmare, it is profoundly important that Mark Lewis Taylor has updated and revised this book, a cry of the heart expounding a theology of the cross."

Gary Dorrien | author of Kantian Reason and Hegelian Spirit and The New Abolition

"Mark Taylor correctly identifies mass incarceration as the logical result of a ruthless capitalist system that has impoverished and abandoned the poor, especially poor people of color.  The bodies of the poor are surplus labor on the streets of our decrepit cities.  But once these bodies are placed in cages they can generate $ 50,000 or $ 60,000 a year for the prison industrial complex where they are abused, tortured and exploited in a system of neoslavery.  Taylor knows that reforms are useless.  We are called as Christians to mobilize to destroy the predatory machine of corporate capital itself and liberate the captives."


Chris Hedges | author of Wages of Rebellion

"After police brutality in Ferguson and in other cities, this courageous book, updated and expanded, is most timely and needed. It should be studied in churches, seminaries, and classrooms to help develop a counter-politics based on a prophetic reading of the way of the cross against American imperialism."

Kwok Pui-lan | Episcopal Divinity School

"A powerful critique of America as Empire and the challenge it poses for all who believe in the way of the cross."

James H. Cone | Union Theological Seminary