"The Aesthetics of Atheism demonstrates how our contemporary cultural imagination can become a source for significant theological and biblical inquiry. Readers will first be surprised and then convinced that TV horror stories like Stranger Things, the music of David Bowie and Leonard Cohen, and the art of Damien Hirst might actually open up the text of the Gospel of Mark in significant ways. Here is reflection on theology and contemporary culture at its finest."
Atheism and Christianity are often placed at polar opposite ends of a spectrum, forever in stark conflict with each other. In The Aesthetics of Atheism, Kutter Callaway and Barry Taylor propose a radical alternative: atheism and theism need each other. In fact, atheism offers profound and necessary theological insights into the heart of Christianity itself. To get at these truths, Callaway and Taylor dive into the aesthetic dimensions of atheism, using everything from Stranger Things to Damien Hirst’s controversial sculptures to the music of David Bowie, Nick Cave, and Leonard Cohen.
- Publisher Fortress Press
- Format Paperback
- ISBN 9781506439884
- eBook ISBN 9781506439891
- Dimensions 5.5 x 8.5
- Pages 200
- Publication Date April 2, 2019
"Through Callaway and Taylor's analysis of popular cultural media, they present contemporary landmarks of a 'poetic of the numinous' that encompass the vast landscape of belief, unbelief, and everything in between. For this reason, The Aesthetics of Atheism models a way to address existential realities with those more apt to find God on Netflix, at a concert, or in a gallery."
"In this courageous and creative work, Callaway and Taylor lead us beyond the tired binaries of modernity into honest engagement with our paradoxical existence and experience of God. In doing so, they've given us not only a fresh and challenging reading of the Gospel of Mark but have also provided a pathway toward receiving a/theistic popular culture as an aesthetic gift for revitalizing traditional construals of God's transcendence and immanence."
We are all on a journey. Let's understand one another and journey together.
"So often Christians desire to learn about a/theists as a means of converting them. There isn't anything inherently wrong with the motivations of that approach, but Callaway and Taylor propose another. Through the examination of the creative production of contemporary a/theism, this book is focused on walking along side a/theists and learning from them. It's not only a more respectful tone, it is more representational of what is really going on in our society—mutual growth. We are all on a journey. Let's understand one another and journey together."
"Kutter Callaway and Barry Taylor are two of our most reliable cultural observers with sharp theological lenses."
"This is such an important work. Kutter Callaway and Barry Taylor are two of our most reliable cultural observers with sharp theological lenses. The Aesthetics of Atheism is the most important and powerful cultural analysis that I've come across in a long time. From Stranger Things to Damien Hirst, this book is brimming with astute observations and honest critiques of both theism and atheism."
In our modern secular age, faith may continue to take on the shape of dereliction and we may need to squint our eyes in order to see the beauty of the Divine.
"Kutter Callaway and Barry Taylor have weaved in this text a theological tapestry of resources for pinning oneself to that moment on the cross wherein, as they say, following G. K. Chesterton, 'God apostatizes against God's very self.' In our modern secular age, faith may continue to take on the shape of dereliction and we may need to squint our eyes in order to see the beauty of the Divine. And for those of us committed to the way of Jesus, you'll find Callaway and Taylor's evocative and critical theological commentary to be a lens that makes the squinting more bearable. We need books like this for times like this."
I'm a fan of Kutter Callaway and Barry Taylor because they always ask provocative questions that make me think more deeply about my faith and how I live it.
"Truth in advertising: I'm a fan of Kutter Callaway and Barry Taylor because they always ask provocative questions that make me think more deeply about my faith and how I live it. Bravo! This book would be a refreshing (perhaps 'sublime,' as they discuss the word) addition to any typical evangelism course in Christian colleges across the country."
"Though it frustrates both my Christian and atheist friends, I find the forced dichotomy between atheist and theist to be simplistic. I'm thankful for folks like Kutter Callaway and Barry Taylor for imaging a world with more than two colors in our palate to create a shared reality."
Mike McHargue, author of Finding God in the Waves