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dc.contributor.authorRevell, Roger
dc.description.abstractThis thesis reflects theologically on a topic of pressing contemporary preoccupation: self-development. In doing so, it finds instruction and inspiration in the classical Reformed doctrine of sanctification. This undertaking is premised on deep misgivings about the way many people, including many Christians, now tend to conceive of how to grow and develop as persons. This (problematic) approach to self-development has been variously labeled and mapped. In the context of this essay, it is referred to as the self-realisation ethic and is discussed and critiqued with special reference to the legacy of Carl Rogers, one of its leading exponents. In pondering what a theologically-robust alternative to the Rogerian self-realisation ethos might entail, this project begins by plumbing the early Reformed vision of sanctification as it comes from the hand of William Perkins of Cambridge (1558–1602). Perkins is an apt source, given that his construal of sanctification is not only representative of his tradition but is also generously expounded and experientially-oriented. His relative obscurity in our time belies the promise of his thought for retrieval. My study of Perkins provides an expanded understanding of his sanctification theology by looking at its treatment across his corpus. Building on the Perkinsian inheritance, the project concludes with an exercise of constructive appropriation. The proposal which emerges is developed in accord with the ethos of “engaged” systematics. The objective is to reinculturate (or re-contextualise) Perkins’s thought, that is, to make the meaning and significance of his doctrine of sanctification more intelligible and salient for our moment. The tangible result of this appropriative endeavour is a series of protocols which are commended as a basis for negotiating one’s self-development in an authentically Christian manner. For the sake of persuasiveness and plausibility, these protocols are expounded with reference to pertinent historical and social-scientific insights.
dc.description.sponsorshipReid Trust; Institution for Religion and Culture; Kennedy Foundation
dc.rightsAll Rights Reserved
dc.subjectWilliam Perkins
dc.subjectEngaged Systematics
dc.subjectTheological Reinculturation
dc.titleBecoming What We Are: A Theological Account of Self-Development Informed by William Perkins's Theology of Sanctification
dc.type.qualificationnameDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)
dc.publisher.institutionUniversity of Cambridge
dc.type.qualificationtitlePhD in Christian Theology
cam.supervisorMcFarland, Ian

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