The Indiscrete Image

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2008-11-01
  • Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
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Humanity's creative capacity has never been more unsettling than it is at our current moment, when it has ushered us into new technological worlds that challenge the very definition of "the human." Those anxious to safeguard the human against techno-scientific threats often appeal to religious traditions to protect the place and dignity of the human. But how well do we understand both theological tradition and today's technological culture? InThe Indiscrete Image,Thomas A. Carlson challenges our common ideas about both, arguing instead that it may be humanity's final lack of definition that first enables, and calls for, human creativity and its correlatesincluding technology, tradition, and their inextricable interplay within religious existence. Framed in response to Martin Heidegger's influential account of the relation between technological modernity and theological tradition,The Indiscrete Imagebuilds an understanding of creativity as conditioned by insurmountable unknowing and incalculable possibility through alternative readings of Christian theological tradition and technological cultureand the surprising resonance between these two. Carlson concludes that the always ongoing work of world creation, tied essentially to human self-creation, implies neither an idol's closure nor an icon's transcendence, but the "indiscrete image" whose love makes possibleby keeping openboth the human and its world.

Author Biography

Thomas A. Carlson is professor of religious studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and the author of Indiscretion: Finitude and the Naming of God, also published by the University of Chicago Press.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Openingp. 1
Of God or a Salamander: The Creative Human as Indiscrete Imagep. 5
"I am": Technological Modernity, Theological Tradition, and the Human in Questionp. 36
The Living Image: Infinitude, Unknowing, and Creative Capacity in Mystical Anthropologyp. 74
Of the Indefinite Human: Religion and the Nature of Technological Culturep. 118
Here Comes Everybody: Technopoetics and Mystical Tradition in Joycep. 149
To Inherit: The Birth of Possible Worldsp. 185
Closingp. 206
Bibliographyp. 217
Indexp. 233
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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