A discourse of interactive bodies traverses "religion," in the study of both social movements, and cosmological constructions. And theological narrative has always come enmeshed in its material ecologies—of creation, incarnation, ritual, resurrection. How then do theological and religious studies intersect new scientific stories of relationality, as of quantum entanglement, emergence, complexity, climate, and neuroscience? Might “new materialist" and affect theories help to instigate transdisciplinary alliances of “intra-active becoming” (Barad), resistant to both anthropocentric theologies and reductive modernisms? In other words, might fresh entanglements of science and religion intensify attention to the fragile bodies of our creaturely interdependence?
It is the hope of the 2014 Transdisciplinary Theological Colloquium at Drew that such a conversation—with the help of our special guests Karen Barad and Jane Bennett—might elude the standard stand-offs of "religion and science," or of spirituality and materialism, discourse and bodies, theory and politics, and even religious studies and constructive theology. In the interest of an ethics of embodied responsibility, might the entanglement of many fields work to energize a paradigm of planetary nonseparability?
The conference opens with graduate student papers presented on Friday afternoon. The formal TTC begins Saturday morning. Invited presenters will share their papers in written form in advance (to be made available to registrants). They will not offer lectures, but brief recapitulations, followed by responses, then opened to conversation among invited participants and then the audience.
Find out more about the Transdisciplinary Theological Colloquium at Drew Theological School.