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Disability in the Christian Tradition
A Reader
POD; Published: 8/6/2012
ISBN: 978-0-8028-6602-8
Price: $ 49.50
576 Pages
Trim Size, in inches: 6 x 9
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For two millennia Christians have thought about what human impairment is and how faith communities and society should respond to people with perceived impairments. However, never before has one volume collected the most significant Christian thinkers' writings on disability.

Brian Brock and John Swinton have answered this need with Disability in the Christian Tradition. This book brings together for the first time the views of renowned Christian leaders throughout history - including Augustine, Aquinas, Julian of Norwich, Luther, Calvin, Hegel, Kierkegaard, van den Bergh, Bonhoeffer, Barth, Vanier, and Hauerwas. Fourteen experts in theology and disability studies guide readers through each era or group of thinkers, offering clear commentary and highlighting important themes.
Jean Vanier
-- founder of L'Arche
"A book that is indispensable for all those who reflect upon the value of people with a disability and their place in the church. It gives significant extracts of eminent theologians and people committed in the church over the ages on this subject."
Frances Young
-- University of Birmingham
"From the Cappadocian Fathers and Augustine, to Vanier and Hauerwas, by way of Aquinas and Julian of Norwich, Luther and Calvin, Bonhoeffer and Barth - not to mention other unexpected bypaths - this remarkably comprehensive reader is a highly significant contribution to the burgeoning field of theological reflection on disability."
Theological Book Review
"While various contemporary theologians have thought about disability in theological terms, this volume is the first to grapple with what Christians of other ages might have to contribute to this inquiry. . . . This text is ideal for introductory research or an introductory course to theological reflection on disability, or for seeking to understand how to use historical theology as a source for contemporary ethical deliberation."
Presbyterian History
"This book has a place in conversations about disability and the meaning of being human, and in understanding that studying church history introduces us to voices that speak to contemporary issues."
Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae
"This is a timely book on an aspect that has been scandalously neglected in theological literature — people living with disabilities. . . . The book deals with a deeply human issue in an academically interesting and theologically responsible way. It should not only be compulsory reading for studies in the field, but should also be brought to the table as part of the core business of theologians."
"Makes a unique and important contribution to the ongoing discussion of disability and theology by bringing the Christian tradition to bear on the contemporary conversation. At the same time, it provides a model for faithful and creative engagement with texts from different eras."
"The quality of the contributions is excellent throughout, with much scope for reflection and utility beyond disability theology as a unique discipline. . . . This is an invaluable resource for those thinking about how to engage in this area, and to give some depth for pastoral and personal reflection on the topic."
"The great contribution of this book is that it widens and deepens the conversation by bringing to the table some of the most influential writers of the Western Church tradition and courteously interrogating them for their thoughts on the subject of disability. The result is an intriguing and suggestive collection of resources. . . . The real strength of this collection is the range, scope and creativity of its contributors who, collectively, have made a contribution greater than the sum of its parts."
Church Times
"The editors of this volume, with its contributors, have brought together a rich and nourishing body of work, which should both inform and stimulate debate. It approaches serious matters with sensitivity and intelligence, and is strongly recommended."