Bultmann and Blair

In the lastest LRB, there is a collection of snippets from the magazine’s coverage of Margaret Thatcher (“the third most written about person in the ‘LRB’ archive, after Shakespeare and Freud”), including this aperçu from Tony Blair:

What makes things even worse for radical, progressive spirits is that the ultra-right appears to be even more in control of the Conservative Party this year than it has been previously. Mrs Thatcher clearly regards herself as a dea ex machina, sent down from on high to ‘knock Britain into shape.’ She will wield her power over the next few years dictatorially and without compunction. On the other hand, there is a tremendous danger–to which Dr Owen has succumbed–in believing that ‘Thatcherism’ is somehow now invincible, that it has established a new consensus and that all the rest of us can do is debate alternatives within its framework. It is essential to demythologize ‘Thatcherism.’

In retrospect, it’s clear that Blair didn’t go far enough — he needed to overcome the inherent limitations in Bultmann’s project of demythologization and embrace a Bonhoefferian religionless interpretation of “Thatcherism.”

3 thoughts on “Bultmann and Blair

  1. In his last ms Gabriel Vahanian wrote: “You do theology not against the background of the death of God but in spite of it”- the question for politics is do “we do politics not against the background of Thatcherism but in spite of it”-

Comments are closed.