It has come to my attention that we here at AUFS are famous as critics of Radical Orthodoxy, but at the same time, many people believe we have no substantive critique. It is true that many of our posts here are occasional and underdeveloped in nature (i.e., are blog posts), so that one might come away with the idea that we are solely occupied with scoring cheap points. Yet there is a whole world outside the blogosphere, where we have actually published various books and essays! It is in that extra-blogical world that one can find our substantive critiques of Radical Orthodoxy. In specific, here are a couple places one might look:
- Anthony and Daniel Whistler’s editor’s introduction to After the Postsecular and the Postmodern includes several passages critical of Radical Orthodoxy
- My essay (PDF link) “‘That They Might Have Ontology’: Radical Orthodoxy and the New Debate,” originally presented at a very well-attended AAR session and subsequently published in Political Theology, includes extensive critiques of the movement occasioned by the edited volume Theology and the Political
If the critiques found in these pieces seem to you to be inadequate and unconvincing, that’s fair enough — yet one must concede that they exist. If the volume of writing we’ve produced specifically on Radical Orthodoxy seems remarkably small, that might be because we don’t define our entire lives and academic careers in opposition to Radical Orthodoxy — we’ve considered the movement’s claims, found them to be wanting, and for the most part moved on. When a particular incident comes up that warrants some further discussion (normally a new blog post by Milbank), we might comment on it here in a style suitable for a blog, with our previous critiques always in the background.
Thank you for your attention to this matter. I am 100% confident that from now on, no one will make broad generalizations about the cogency and validity of our critique of Radical Orthodoxy without doing us the basic courtesy of actually learning what our critique is.
(Or else this will have no effect whatsoever and people will continue to spew unfounded bullshit about us behind our backs on Facebook — whichever.)