Theology and Social Sciences: Partners in Transforming the World
Dr Joshua Iyadurai:
Founder and Director of Marina Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Religion Chennai, India.
Seminar title: Theology and Social Sciences: Partners in Transforming the World
This seminar will present the need of interdisciplinary approach to understand God’s activity in the world. It will discuss the current trends of studying religious phenomenon in social sciences and engaging social scientific approach in theology. Social Sciences have come a long way from the positivist paradigm by shedding its reductionist approach to human experiences and the role of religion in human life. Thus, by engaging social sciences, theology will be on a firm ground to reflect the ground reality, instead of being preoccupied with abstract concepts. With the postmodern turn, Social Scientists are increasingly adopting transformative paradigm in their research aiming to transform the world of the participants. We need to engage social sciences to make theological research, an agency of transformation. This seminar will present a few fascinating studies as examples that positively impacted the Church from the field of social sciences and from theology that engaged social scientific methods. This partnership will enable theological scholars to enter secular space to offer/challenge a perspective with theological underpinnings on an issue. Such approach will enable theological scholars to be rooted in one’s context and assume leadership as public intellectuals to shape the future of their country, continent, and the world.