Preserving the Common, Producing Difference: Neo-Calvinism and the Cultural Turn in the Humanities

ARCU lecture by Dr. Ryan C. McIlhenny
Associate Professor of History and Humanities
Providence Christian College
2013–2014 ARCU lecturerbio

Listen: audio of lecture and question-and-answer session

A crucial element often missing in the contemporary discussions about Christ and culture is a robust definition of culture. This address offers an updated definition that evaluates traditional evangelical understandings on the topic with contemporary cultural studies and critical theory. Culture, as I propose, is the purely phenomenal identity that springs from human interaction with the created order. Such a definition affirms the common and shared/undifferentiated activities of both Christians and non-Christians that, nonetheless, produce different cultures, preserving the neo-Calvinist emphasis on structure and direction.

Lecture presented by the ICS Centre for Philosophy, Religion and Social Ethics at the Toronto School of Theology boardroom, 47 Queen’s Park Crescent E., Toronto, Thursday March 20, 2014. 7:30 PM.