ISBN-10:
0742531554
ISBN-13:
9780742531550
Pub. Date:
11/11/2003
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Mutuality Matters: Family, Faith, and Just Love / Edition 272

Mutuality Matters: Family, Faith, and Just Love / Edition 272

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Overview

Married and family life around the world has undergone a revolution in the last several decades: the radical democratization of intimacy in spousal and parent-child relationships. Previous principles of hierarchy, inequality, and duty that defined the relationships between husband, wife, and children have been challenged and often replaced by more fluid bonds of equality, intimacy, emotional self-disclosure, communication, and mutual trust. The key question that has emerged for our times, then, is how exactly do families sustain genuine mutuality, democracy, and strong relationships? Figuring out good answers to this question is the major theme of this book and the origin of the title Mutuality Matters. Three common strategies for creating just marriages have arisen: political and legal reform, smarter negotiating by women, and new cultural perceptions of marriage. While the authors in this book attend to all three strategies to different degrees, the primary focus is the third strategy: changing our cultural understanding of women and men in marriage. Moreover, to effect genuine cultural change, the authors recognize the need to enlist the help of religion as a key culture-forming element. Mutuality has become a common way for theologians from a variety of perspectives to talk about a more just love, a love that combines affection and justice. But many questions have been left unanswered: What exactly do people believe they have promised when they align themselves with Christian claims about love in their rituals of marriage and partnership? Do Christian views of love include the ideal of justice in marriage? Because accommodation or sacrifice is inevitable in any intimate human community, how can families insure that it will be mutual and just? How is marriage strengthened if justice is added to love at the core of mutuality? What does mutuality mean across time and distance, when participants are parents and children, when fathers are absent, when parents should be honored, or within a violent context? Is it possible to have democratic families without mutual sacrifice? Can submission be mutual? On these and other questions, the authors of this volume claim distinctive responsibility for rethinking Christian convictions about love and family life around the theme of mutuality and for strengthening the ministry of religious communities as those communities seek to empower and support families in their practice of mutuality. The essays written for this volume reflect the development of practical theology as one method for exploring the religious meanings of family and enhancing the practice of family living by 1) assuming that all theory has implications for practice and all practices are theory laden and 2) drawing into dialogue the knowledge and interpretations of a variety of perspectives including philosophy, biblical criticism, anthropology, liturgical studies, pastoral care, ethics, cross-cultural studies, and religious education. This collection of essays is noteworthy for both this interdisciplinary scope and its richly ecumenical representation.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

An important collection of essays focused on the challenge facing Christians of the 21st century: re-conceiving Christian love, particularly within families and between intimates, as radically egalitarian. From philosophical and theological defenses of the place of equality in the practice of love to descriptions of concrete practices within families and congregations, these essays are a thoughtful contribution on the side of gender justice to the on-going family values debate.--Gloria H. Albrecht, University of Detroit Mercy

Finally a book dealing with a major revolution in our country and the world! Old concepts of marriage have given way to more fluid bonds of equality, communication and trust. This book explores issues of the mutuality of love, justice and gender relations in the context of marriage, pastoral ministry and congregational life. Both clergy and family therapists will find this book's wide range of perspectives and timely exploration of infrequently discussed topics helpful in the ongoing dialogue about the changing shape of marriage and family in the 21st century.--William Hiebert, STM, executive director of Marriage and Family Counseling Service, Rock Island, IL and co-author of Pre- and Re-marital Counseling

Like good wine and cheese, Herbert Anderson and his colleagues seem to get better with age. Sitting down to this feast of ideas, especially the appetizing concept of mutuality within marriage and family, allows the reader to nibble and sip with curiosity and delight. At the heart of this intellectual menu can be found Anderson's rich imagination, clinical experience and refreshing honesty. The critical ingredients of love, justice, forgiveness, respect, spirituality, and mutuality explored by contributing authors provide the recipe for a text that is not only mutually satisfying, but also one worth preserving.--Joseph Gillespie, O.P., Parochial Vicar at the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis, and supervisor in the American Association of Marriage and Family Th

Gloria H. Albrecht

An important collection of essays focused on the challenge facing Christians of the 21st century: re-conceiving Christian love, particularly within families and between intimates, as radically egalitarian. From philosophical and theological defenses of the place of equality in the practice of love to descriptions of concrete practices within families and congregations, these essays are a thoughtful contribution on the side of gender justice to the on-going family values debate.

Joseph Gillespie

Like good wine and cheese, Herbert Anderson and his colleagues seem to get better with age. Sitting down to this feast of ideas, especially the appetizing concept of mutuality within marriage and family, allows the reader to nibble and sip with curiosity and delight. At the heart of this intellectual menu can be found Anderson's rich imagination, clinical experience and refreshing honesty. The critical ingredients of love, justice, forgiveness, respect, spirituality, and mutuality explored by contributing authors provide the recipe for a text that is not only mutually satisfying, but also one worth preserving.

Christine E. Gudorf

This excellent pastoral collection is a tremendous resource for rebutting conservative arguments and alarms that pervade the media, and for moving mutuality from an academic value into mainstream Christian concerns by examining the experience of real familes.

Family Therapy

This collection of essays is noteworthy for both this interdisciplinary scope and its richly ecumenical representation.

William Hiebert

Finally a book dealing with a major revolution in our country and the world! Old concepts of marriage have given way to more fluid bonds of equality, communication and trust. This book explores issues of the mutuality of love, justice and gender relations in the context of marriage, pastoral ministry and congregational life. Both clergy and family therapists will find this book's wide range of perspectives and timely exploration of infrequently discussed topics helpful in the ongoing dialogue about the changing shape of marriage and family in the 21st century.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780742531550
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 11/11/2003
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 1,180,129
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 1 - 17 Years

Customer Reviews