Liveability at risk rehearsing a public theology in the Anthropocene

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It is now recognized that the majority of people who will be adversely affected by climate change will live in cities. It is time for a public theology to explore how its resources might be put to use in the service of extreme cities in the era of the Anthropocene. The city of Sydney provides a rather surprising case study for such. Through 2019/2020 it was subject to succession of extreme heat, fire in its surrounds, followed by the pandemic and then five floods. It had just been deemed to be the world’s third most liveable city. In these matters theology is not the lead discipline. It is seldom invoked and invited to be placed along many other fields of knowledge in this knot of transdisciplinary challenges. It has been claimed that the future in the Anthropocene is likely to be ugly and cities will be marked by precarity. It is time for a public theology to consider the potential plight of cities and develop ahead of time – in ordinary time – a pattern of understanding and moral practice. For that to be possible it is critical for such a theology to heed the theoretical work being done in the fields that comprise an Earth System science.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)602-621
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Public Theology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2023


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