This page is dedicated to Pete Shelley (1955—2018), who made it ok to be a nerdy kind of punk who thinks (sings and writes songs) about love and uncertainty. Asked what punk is, he said : “You’re not pretending to be something you are not. You are just what you are. Punk is an art of action. It’s about deciding to do something and then going out and doing it.”
a punk theology manifesto
punk is an attitude.
punk theology is a spiritual attitude.
punk theology is a radical deconstruction of the spiritual crisis.
the spiritual crisis is also a political crisis, an ideological crisis and a crisis of ethics.
random q&a on punk theology
punk theology is anti-authoritarian and anti-institutions : ergo punk theology is anti the academy and not only that, it is anti-theology. so wouldn’t it be a contradictio in terminis to do work under a moniker of punk theology as part of a phd in a faculty of theology at a university?
well i could say : but what is not a contradictio in terminis? life itself is a contradictio in terminis : we live but we all know we are going to die. i could say : punk itself was a contradictio in terminis from the moment the clash signed with cbs and employed a commercial firm to print thousands of ‘the clash’ fake punk t-shirts as i told mick jones myself, in the queue for the bog at the roxy in 1977. i was quite drunk but he was agreeable and he agreed and he spoke of the need for compromise (and i also told him how much i loved ‘police and thieves’).
i could say : “the truth is only known … by … guttersnipes.” (garageland)
i could say : yes but punk is not anti-process.
at art school i tried to start a thing called anti-artists (or pretended that there was such a thing) and put up posters (amongst ‘our’ demands : free coffee for all art students) and wrote abusive letters to leo schofield. and i spent the next 25 years being anti—art but making art, teaching art, thinking and writing about art — even when i was smashing up portable CD players with a wooden mallet i was thinking about art.
in this case being anti-something is not nihilistic move. it enables one to explore the liminal space between what something is (and more importantly, what it is said to be by those who have the power to say what something is and isn’t) especially what it isn’t and said not to be and what is missing from it — and what it could be, what lies beyond it, just outside of our grasp now, but perhaps not for always.
#phd #punk #theology