Prophetic Realism Paperback

Beyond Militarism and Pacifism in an Age of Terror

by Ronald Stone;

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Prophetic Realism

Full Product Description

After September 11, 2001, ordinary citizens faced a new world ruled by political and religious machinations against the threat of terrorism. While political leaders pursued a policy of militarism, many religious leaders advocated pacificism.

Ronald H. Stone advocates a middle road between these two extremes, what he calls prophetic realism. Taking up Reinhold Niebuhr’s notion of Christian realism, Stone argues that our current situation calls for hard answers to hard questions. Our foreign policy must account for the realistic threat of terrorism while at the same time understanding the religious roots of such activities and our response to them. As Stone contends, militarism simply demonizes the enemy while pacifism fails to grasp the real evil nature of the enemy. Stone calls for a prophetic stance that calls into question the shortcomings of our current international policy and our views of terrorism and terrorist states.

Stone offers compelling evidence that Jesus provides the prophetic model of our interaction with our enemies. This book will change people’s minds about the relationship of religion and politics in the contemporary world.

Table Of Contents

Preface: After 9/11 Chapter 1: Biblical Sources of Prophetic Realism Chapter 2: Historical Sources of Realism Chapter 3: The Development of American Prophetic Realism Chapter 4: A Perspective on International Politics Chapter 5: Ontology of Power Chapter 6: On Power and Purpose Chapter 7: Prophetic Realism and Peacemaking Chapter 8: Realist Criticism of Just Peacemaking Theory Chapter 9: Resurgent Pacifist Attack on Realism Chapter 10: Prophetic Realism, Human Rights, and Foreign Policy Chapter 11: Al Qaeda and U. S Foreign Policy Chapter 12: The Peacemaking Struggle and Resistance


Ronald Stone is John Witherspoon Professor Emeritus of Ethics at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.


Ronald Stone is that rare intellectual who is at home in the discussions both of Christian theology and of international relations. This book, with its persistent interaction between the two realms, is a double challenge: to churches who are often naïve and dogmatic in moral judgments about world affairs, and to those politicians and political scientists who ignore the ethical meaning of their judgments. It is particularly relevant in the post 9/11 era, when many past certainties are insecure. –Roger L. Shinn, Reinhold Niebuhr professor emeritus of social ethics, Union Theological Seminary, New York

"...Stone's interdisciplinary book makes an important contribution to current debates in theological ethics and international politics...Stone's project helps illuminate the challenges that American policies have obviated or neglected and would benefit specialists as well as upper-level undergraduate and graduate students." Jonathan Rothchild, Journal of Religion, July 2007

“The great strength of this book is the clarity author Ronald Stone brings to the meaning, history, and theological importance of the tradition of prophetic realism. “—Jeffrey W. Robbins, Journal of Church and State, April 10, 2008

Prophetic Realism by Ronald Stone was published by Continuum in October 2007. The ISBN for Prophetic Realism is 9780567026750.

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Details for Prophetic Realism

Page last updated 21st October 2016
Author / Artist
Book FormatPaperback
PublisherContinuum (October 2007)
Number of Pages208
Thickness13 mm
Height216 mm
Width138 mm
Product Code1004347
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