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Keep Listening

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[...] he says, we need to take seriously the category of the "other," since "attention to otherness in a positive, ethical sense and the affirmation of the other as other is the greatest legacy and achievement of the postmodern era." Jenny Daggers links feminist critiques and interreligious dialogue, arguing that our failure to treat people of other traditions with dignity matches in deed and rhetoric our inability to see that women are full and equal members of the community.

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									                                  Francis X. Clooney                                                                         respect individual strangers, but also
                                                                                                                             critique universalist worldviews that,

                                  Keep	Listening                                                                             with good intentions, deprive others of
                                                                                                                             their uniqueness by making them just
                                                                                                                             like ourselves. And we need to refurbish
                                                                                We need to respect the other as other,       our communities as places where these
                                  Church	and	Religious	                         welcome her as our neighbor and teach-       others too are at home. Finding a way
                                  “Other”                                       er, and allow her contribution to unsettle   to do this is difficult, because there is
                                  Edited by Gerard Mannion                      our familiar conversations. The volume       no single authority that all respect, nor
                                  T&T Clark, $130, 320 pp.                      collects sixteen essays under three head-    a single standard for the good and rea-
                                                                                ings. Section 1, “Ecumenical and Plural-     sonable. Mannion therefore pleads for


                                  T
                                           he globe is becoming intercon-       ist Contexts and Questions,” deals with      humble, patient dialogue, an ongoing,
                                           nected at an increasingly quick      community formation in border realms         revisable, open-ended conversation that
                                           pace. We are thinking differently    where religions and cultures meet, rang-     by its process and not merely its conclu-
                                  about what it means to be human, in-          ing from the geographical boundary of        sions draws us together.
                                  dividually and in community; religions        India and Pakistan to feminist reflections      Even history is not safe, since un-
                                  are interacting more and more, and are        on power and community in the church.        derstanding others requires reconsid-
                                  changing because of these encounters;         Section 2, “Church, Inclusivity, and Di-     ering old stories from fresh, disturbing
                                  the reality of global Christianity is com-    versity,” seeks models for a more inclu-     angles. Paul M. Collins reminds us how
                                  ing home to us, as Christians in Africa,      sive church. Section 3, “Constructive        Roberto de Nobili, a great missionary
                                  India, and elsewhere critique the Euro-       Explorations for the Future,” asks how       scholar who adapted himself brilliantly
                                  American vision of church. It is tempt-       churches can accommodate change and          to Indian culture, is today problematic,
                                  ing to settle for part of the picture: just   balance the necessary elements of conti-     given how he embraced the hierarchies
                                  ecumenism, just liberal or conservative       nuity and ongoing diversification.           of caste that we would consider oppres-
                                  views, just Americ
								
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