Structural transformation and democratic public spaces: Reflections on Habermas and the 2014 Tshwane State of the Capital City Address

Judging by the immense global academic interaction with his work, Jürgen Habermas’s social theory, with particular reference to structural transformation of the public sphere and democracy, is one of the most constructive models for understanding the role and function of citizens in forming healthy societies. This article investigates the recent 2014 Tshwane State of the City..

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Your sister in Babylon sends her love: Towards prophetic solidarity in post-apartheid South Africa

How does a self-respecting Christian from Galilee who now finds himself based near the seat of empire relate to power in light of his faith? How are his admonishments, especially those which relate to the public arena, to be appropriated by those living on the periphery of the empire? I reflect on these questions from the vantage point..

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Jesus in the Dumping Sites: Doing theology in the overlaps of human and material waste

Jesus’ option for the poor should be reclaimed in a clear theological and ecclesial option for the dumping sites of our cities and towns. That is the basic proposal of this article. Reflecting upon three different dumping sites – different in size, age and history – this article will explore the central thread of material and human..

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Living in the townships: An appraisal of Pentecostal social ministry in Tshwane

This article offers an appraisal of the social ministry of Pentecostal churches through fellowship, healing and livelihood creation in the township communities of the city of Tshwane. In meeting this aim the discussion advances a thesis of these churches as agents of social support and survival of the downcast. In particular, the article attempts to..

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Informal community-based early childhood development as a focus for urban public theology in South Africa

This article highlights important dimensions of public theology and shows how the identifieddimensions are relevant to the specific situation of informal early childhood development (ECD) facilities in a South African urban setting. The article considers the contributions andchallenges of informal community-based ECD on the basis of research conducted in the Rustenburg/Phokeng area of the North..

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Faith community as a centre of liberationist praxis in the city

Theologians speak of the silence of churches’ prophetic voice in the ‘new’ South Africa, whilst the country features amongst the socio-economically most unequal countries in the world, and the urban areas in particular continue to be characterised by segregation. In this context I ask: where is liberation theology? I spell out my reading of some..

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Discerning the role of faith communities in responding to urban youth marginalisation

Urban youth marginalisation became a key consideration in scholarly and policy literature in the 1990s. This entailed a shift from an emphasis on youth in relation to activism in the struggle to overcome colonial racism – popularly known as ‘the struggle against apartheid’ – to an emphasis on youth as the object of social inquiry and social welfare..

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