Criticism of Earth

Buy hardcover (Brill)
Published Nov 2016
ISBN: 9789004225572

On Marx, Engels and Theology, IV

Roland Boer, University of Newcastle, Australia

Criticism of Earth thoroughly reassesses Marx and Engels’s engagement with theology, drawing on largely ignored texts. Thus, alongside ‘opium of the people’, Hegel’s philosophy of law, and the Feuerbach theses, other works are also central. These include Marx’s early pieces on theology, continual transformations of fetishism, and lengthy treatments of Bruno Bauer and Max Stirner. Engels too is given serious attention, since he moved beyond Marx in appreciating theology’s revolutionary possibilities. Engels’s Calvinism is discussed, his treatments of biblical criticism and theology, and his later writings on early Christianity’s revolutionary nature. The book continues the project for a renewed and enlivened interaction between Marxism and religion, being the fourth of five volumes in the Criticism of Heaven and Earth series.

Biographical note

Roland Boer, Ph.D. (1993) in Biblical Studies, McGill University, is Research Professor at the University of Newcastle, Australia. He has published extensively in theology, Marxism, biblical criticism and political theory. His most recent works are Criticism of Theology (2011), Cave Droppings (2011), and Criticism of Religion (2009).


All those interested in Marxism and religion, critical theory and philosophy, as well as biblical studies and theology.


“A great philosopher once wrote that ‘some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested’. The five volumes of Roland Boer’s magisterial series Marxism and Theology may well be all three.”
Matthew Sharpe, Arena Journal, No. 41/42, 2013: [28]-58.

Table of contents

1. The Subterranean Bible
2. The Leading Article: Theology, Philosophy and Science
3. Against the Theological Hegelians I: Bruno Bauer
4. Against the Theological Hegelians II: Max Stirner and the Lever of History
5. Against the Theological Hegelians III: Ludwig Feuerbach’s Inversion
6. Hegel, Theology and the Secular State
7. Idols, Fetishes and Graven Images
8. Of Flowers and Chains: The Ambivalence of Theology
9. Engels’s Biblical Temptations
10. Revelation and Revolution