Karl Marx and Liberation Theology: Dialectical Materialism and Christian Spirituality in, against, and beyond Contemporary Capitalism
This paper explores convergences and discrepancies between liberation theology and the works of Karl Marx through the dialogue between one of the key contemporary proponents of liberation theology, Peter McLaren, and the agnostic scholar in critical pedagogy, Petar Jandrić. The paper briefly outlines liberation theology and its main convergences with the works of Karl Marx. Exposing striking similarities between the two traditions in denouncing the false God of money, it explores differences in their views towards individualism and collectivism. It rejects shallow rhetorical homologies between Marx and the Bible often found in liberation theology, and suggests a change of focus from seeking a formal or Cartesian logical consistency between Marxism and Christianity to exploring their dialectical consistency. Looking at Marxist and Christian approaches to morality, it outlines close links between historical materialism and questions of value. It concludes that the shared eschaton of Marxism and the Christianity gives meaning to human history and an opportunity to change it.
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