Marsden On Anti-Establishmentarian Christianity In The Academy

Hollinger speaks for many secularists in the academy, and we can learn from his perceptions and concerns. He is correct that establishmentarian Christianity has difficulty providing social and political equity in the presence of demographic diversification. So the best response is to make clear that we stand for non-Constantinian anti-establishment Christianity that favors equity in pluralistic settings but is not primarily about politics or the social order. I know from experience that people like Hollinger are not reassured by such declarations in the light of the long history of Christian establishmentarianism. Nonetheless, one might hope that eventually our scholarship and our behavior might convince some such critics that more thoughtful versions of traditional Christianity might be encouraged as an alternative to the less thoughtful and more populist versions.

—George Marsden, “Whose Pluralism?” (HT: Troy Gibson)

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