Theologia and the Ideologica of Language: The calling of a theology and religion faculty in a time of populism
This article represents a response to Andries van Aarde’s view on a ‘gateway to the future from a deconstructed past’, a paper presented as part of a conference, ‘Gateway to the Future from a Deconstructed Past’, commemorating the centennial anniversary of the Faculty of Theology at the University of Pretoria, 05–06 April 2017. The article argues that texts, and theology faculties as texts, are just as any structure or construction haunted by their sacred secret. Haunted by the ghosts in the texts from the past to be inspired for the calling of a theology and religion faculty in a time of populism and the ‘renaissance of (neo)nationalism’, according to Van Aarde. In being given the responsibility not only of responding to his contribution but also co-sharing the responsibility of the history of the faculty, the author says that he has a choice: he could respond to the letter of the text or I could be spooked by the ghosts of these texts, the haunting of the sacred secret, calling through Professor Van Aarde’s deconstruction of these texts. The author decides to seek to allow the ghosts of his text to call him. A call, as most calls, to which one can only respond: Here I am! Here I am in this moment (here) of history at this particular Faculty of Theology and Religion. This is a call to share the responsibility, the responsibility of being here and the responsibility of the being of a theology and religion faculty in a time of populism and (neo)nationalism, both globally and locally.
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