Strangers and Fellow Citizens : Perspectives on Immigration and Society

Faculty/Professorship: Systematic Theology  
Author(s): Wabel, Thomas
Publisher Information: Bamberg : Otto-Friedrich-Universität
Year of publication: 2023
Pages: 56-75
Source/Other editions: Studies in Christian Ethics, 34 (2021), 1, S. 56-75 . - ISSN: 0953-9468
is version of: 10.1177/0953946820910750
Year of first publication: 2021
Language(s): English
Licence: German Act on Copyright 
URN: urn:nbn:de:bvb:473-irb-587022
The article sets out a critical assessment of recent public reactions in Germany upon taking in large numbers of refugees since 2015, which have been swaying between moralisation and resentment. In this situation, public theology should ask how hospitality is linked to the perceived identity of a society and to its perception of who belongs, and what role Christianity might play in these debates. Drawing on a phenomenological perspective within contemporary German philosophy (Bernhard Waldenfels), and contrasting this perspective with historical and contemporary voices on migration within political philosophy (Georg Simmel, Michael Walzer), the article explores what the concepts of stranger, member and guest imply for the relation of ‘us’ to ‘the other’. From this, I derive a suggestion as to how Christian theology could contribute to a change in the self-perception of society, centred around the seemingly paradoxical concept of ‘belonging in not-belonging’.
GND Keywords: Deutschland; Flucht; Migration; Integration; Inklusion <Soziologie>; Öffentliche Theologie; Geschichte 2015
Keywords: Stranger, guest, member, migration, integration, fear, belonging, proximity, the political, the unconditional, church, Georg Simmel, Michael Walzer, Bernhard Waldenfels
DDC Classification: 300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology  
200 Religion  
RVK Classification: BW 63000   
Type: Article
Release Date: 27. March 2023

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