On the Virtue and Variety of Movement(s)
  • Jeffrey W. Robbins
Part of the Radical Theologies book series (RADT)


The New Materialism has a counter-intuitive relationship with religion. This is due to both the old materialist, overtly critical attitude toward religion, as well as the continuing religious and spiritual concerns with the misplaced materialistic values associated with consumer capitalism. For the former, religion has been seen as the prime instance of false consciousness. For the latter, materialism is seen as necessarily materialistic, and thus, set in opposition to an authentic spirituality. The New Materialism provides an opportunity for rethinking many of the assumptions associated with these related terms. Specifically, the New Materialism offers alternative understandings of matter, materiality, and thus materialism itself. It provides a way of thinking such that the presumed opposition between materialism and religion can be seen instead in terms of a resource for spiritual renewal and political activation. Put alternatively, my thesis will be that the New Materialism is an altar call of sorts, an invitation to a kind of conversation away from the self and toward the earth. It is a materialism predicated on a metaphysics that sees matter in terms of energy transformation. Matter is not inert; instead, it moves. This gives movement to materialism, and is what makes the New Materialism genuinely non-reductive.


Political Subjectivity False Consciousness Royal Road Late Capitalism Political Theology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Jeffrey W. Robbins 2016

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  • Jeffrey W. Robbins

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