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One of the most original thinkers of the twentieth century, Jacques Ellul (1912-1994) was a French law professor, sociologist, lay theologian, and self-described "Christian anarchist." Collecting Ellul's lectures on the Bible, On Being Rich and Poor contains his prescient meditations on some of the most important theological questions of the modern age. In this volume, a follow-up to the Ellul lectures collected in On Freedom, Love, and Power, Ellul asks how it is that Christianity can justify abandoning the poorest, weakest, and most vulnerable members of society, depriving the next generation of a liveable future, and participating in an unprecedented wave of environmental destruction.In these talks, Ellul observes that some of the harshest language in the Jewish and Christian Bibles is reserved for those who are rich and powerful, and thus able to bend others to their will. Through his analysis of the prophetic vision of Amos and the epistle of James, Ellul exposes the gap between the principles of Christian life and the practices of the modern world. Critiquing a world that values domination over collaboration, he offers an alternative path.Transcribed from the original recordings and translated by Willem H. Vanderburg, a student and long-time colleague of Ellul's, On Being Rich and Poor is an unprecedented look at how one of the twentieth century's foremost thinkers grappled with some of today's most challenging issues.
Jacques Ellul (1912-1994) was a French law professor, historian, sociologist, lay theologian, and Christian anarchist. During the Second World War, he was active in the French resistance; his efforts to save Jews during this time eventually earned him the title "Righteous Among the Nations." A towering intellectual figure, Ellul taught in Paris and at the University of Bordeaux, wrote and published extensively, and engaged throughout his career in a dialogue between the realities of technology and contemporary life, the tenets of the Christian faith, and the principles of human freedom. Transcribed here for the first time, this series of talks refines and clarifies some of Ellul's most controversial insights into what it means to understand and live out God's wishes.Ellul's evaluation of a number of interrelated books of Scripture, including Genesis, Job, Matthew, and John, challenges Jewish and Christian orthodoxies and more progressive interpretations alike by claiming that the Judeo-Christian tradition is both anti-moral and anti-religious. Promoting a life based on freedom and love, Ellul's thinking opens the door to, in his words, "thinking globally and acting locally."
Jacques Ellul's view of propaganda and his approach to the study of propaganda are new. The principal difference between his thought edifice and most other literature on propaganda is that Ellul regards propaganda as a sociological phenomenon rather than as something made by certain people for certain purposes.
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