Thursday, February 9, 2017
It was a while in the making, but Brennan and Brewbaker's Christian Legal Thought: Materials and Cases will be published momentarily -- that is, any day now -- by Foundation Press, well in time for Fall adoption. Here is Foundation's description of the book:
This text examines law and legal institutions through the broad lens of Christian thought, both Catholic and Protestant. The book addresses methodological issues in Christian legal scholarship (What makes legal thought “Christian”?); the relevance of Christian theological doctrines—such as creation, the Christian conception of the human person, the kingdom of God, and the natural and divine laws—for reflection on law; the significance of historical context for Christian legal thought; Christian reflection on important jurisprudential issues and concepts, such as equality, justice, rights, and the rule of law; and Christian perspectives on various legal subjects, such as contracts, torts, and property. The point of the book is less to prescribe what a Christian legal theory should entail in the way of outcomes than to use the Christian faith as a lens through which to understand, and reflect critically upon, law and legal institutions.
Here is where the book's table of contents can be viewed and complimentary copies requested from the publisher.
It was a joy and an honor to collaborate with my dear friend and MOJ-friend Bill Brewbaker, William Alfred Rose Professor of Law at the University of Alabama School of Law, in writing this book. The process itself was inspiring to the authors, and both Bill and I hope that the finished product reveals something of what the breadth of Christian thought offers to those who think or believe that law is something we should care about and that la should, in turn, convey our care to this needy world of ours. Not a book about "law and religion," Christian Legal Thought: Materials and Cases is a book, for use in law school and other classrooms, about what Christianity, Catholic and Protestant, can tell us -- and has already told us -- about the ends and the limits of law. The book does not shy away from differences between Catholic and Protestant thought, nor from historical and ongoing disagreements internal to the Catholic tradition or to the several Protestant denominations discussed; it does, however, look for common ground both among Christians and between Christians and contributors to our (legal) culture who are not Christians.
I'll blog later more about the topics and themes of the book than the table of contents can reveal. For now, though, I'd like to thank, on Bill's and my own behalf, all those MOJ bloggers, MOJ friends, and MOJ readers, as well as many, many others, for the guidance and encouragement they gave us in what turned out to be a more challenging project than we had imagined at its outset. The book's index records just some of many familiar names, many of them familiar from MOJ itself, whose work in the Christian-legal-thought vineyard we have tried to harvest for the purposes animating our book. We will be grateful to receive suggestions, as well as notices of omission or of corrigenda, for the next edition. The current edition is obtainable not only from Foundation but also, of course, from here.
Finally, at least for now, I should add that Foundation will be publishing a thick Teacher's Manual to accompany the book. Although running a little behind the book in the production schedule, the Manual will be out very soon. We wrote the Manual with the goal, among others, of making it easier for those who otherwise might hesitate to offer a course in Christian legal thought.