78 episodes

Honest conversations about the political, theological and cultural ideas that shape who we are in the 21st century.

The Political Animals is hosted by Dr Jonathan Cole, an academic, scholar, translator and writer specialising in political theology: the intersection of religion and politics.

The Political Animals Jonathan Cole

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    • 5.0 • 2 Ratings

Honest conversations about the political, theological and cultural ideas that shape who we are in the 21st century.

The Political Animals is hosted by Dr Jonathan Cole, an academic, scholar, translator and writer specialising in political theology: the intersection of religion and politics.

    Adam Smith, the Invisible Hand and the Intersection between Economics and Theology, with Prof Paul Oslington

    Adam Smith, the Invisible Hand and the Intersection between Economics and Theology, with Prof Paul Oslington

    Jonathan is joined by economist and theologian Paul Oslington for a wide-ranging discussion on the intersection of economics and theology. The conversation begins with Adam Smith, the great father of economics, with a particular focus on his idea of the invisible hand and its allusions to providence. The conversation covers the reception, misreception and new (theological) reading of Smith, plus the virtues and limitations of free markets, the idea of capitalism, wealth and the theological roots of economics.



    Professor Paul Oslington has PhDs in economics (University of Sydney) and theology (University of Divinity). He currently works at Alphacrucis College, is a visiting fellow at the Australian National University and a Research Professor at the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, Charles Sturt University. He was previously a Professor of Economics at the Australian Catholic University and an Associate Professor of Economics at the University of New South Wales. He is currently working on a book for Harvard University Press on the history of economic thinking in the Christian tradition. 



    The Political Animals is hosted by Dr Jonathan Cole, an academic, writer, speaker and translator specialising in political theology: the intersection of religion and politics. Jonathan was a senior terrorism analyst at Australian intelligence agency the Office of National Assessments where he worked on Islamist terrorism and the global jihadist movement. He is the author of The Reign of God: A Critical Engagement with Oliver O'Donovan's Theology of Political Authority and Christian Political Theology in an Age of Discontent: Mediating Scripture, Doctrine, and Political Reality. 



    You can follow Jonathan and the show onFacebook and Twitter.

    • 1 hr 27 min
    A Voice to Parliament, Acknowledgment of Country, Cultural Safety and Cancel Culture, with Dr Anthony Dillon

    A Voice to Parliament, Acknowledgment of Country, Cultural Safety and Cancel Culture, with Dr Anthony Dillon

    Indigenous commentator Anthony Dillon returns to The Political Animals for a conversation about the mooted Indigenous voice to parliament and other aspects of the evolving culture around the place of Aboriginal people in contemporary Australia, including welcome to and acknowledgement of country, the idea of cultural safety, reconciliation, cancel culture in relation to Indigenous issues and the evolving language used to describe Aboriginal, now First Nations, Australians.



    Dr Anthony Dillon is an indigenous commentator and behavioural scientist and researcher at The Australian Catholic University. He blogs at www.anthonydillon.com.au and tweets at @Athonywodillon. You can read Anthony's article, discussed in the show, here.



    The Political Animals is hosted by Dr Jonathan Cole, an academic, writer, speaker and translator specialising in political theology: the intersection of religion and politics. Jonathan was a senior terrorism analyst at Australian intelligence agency the Office of National Assessments where he worked on Islamist terrorism and the global jihadist movement. You can follow Jonathan and the show on Facebook and Twitter.

    • 1 hr 17 min
    Religious Liberty: A History, with Dr Sarah Irving-Stonebraker

    Religious Liberty: A History, with Dr Sarah Irving-Stonebraker

    Intellectual historian Sarah Irving-Stonebraker joins the show for a conversation about the history of religious liberty, exploring the emergence and development of the concept from its first explicit usage by the third century church father Tertullian to its more recent secular evolution towards the present. Key moments in the history of religious liberty are covered, including the medieval period, the Reformation, colonisation, the American constitution and the French Revolution, conscientious objection and the Australian context. 



    Dr Sarah Irving-Stonebraker is Senior Lecturer in History at Western Sydney University and co-editor of the Journal of Religious History. She was awarded her PhD in History from Cambridge University (2007) and has been an Assistant Professor at Florida State University and a Junior Research Fellow at Wolfson College, Oxford University. Her first book, Natural Science and the Origins of the British Empire (Cambridge), was awarded The Royal Society of Literature and Jerwood Foundation Award for Non-fiction. She has two current book projects: Forgotten Histories of Religious Liberty in Australia, 1788- Present and The Death of History and the Hope of Christianity.



    The Political Animals is hosted by Dr Jonathan Cole, an academic, writer, speaker and translator specialising in political theology: the intersection of religion and politics. Jonathan was a senior terrorism analyst at Australian intelligence agency the Office of National Assessments where he worked on Islamist terrorism and the global jihadist movement. He is the author of Christian Political Theology in an Age of Discontent: Mediating Scripture, Doctrine, and Political Reality. You can follow Jonathan and the show on Twitter and Facebook.

    • 1 hr 23 min
    Robert Menzies: An Exploration of the Faith and Politics of Australia's Longest Serving Prime Minister, with Dr David Furse-Roberts

    Robert Menzies: An Exploration of the Faith and Politics of Australia's Longest Serving Prime Minister, with Dr David Furse-Roberts

    Jonathan is joined by historian David Furse-Roberts for an exploration of the faith, political philosophy and political career of Australia's longest serving prime minister, Robert Menzies (over 18 years). They explore the Christian theological influences that shaped the faith of Menzies and his worldview, the way his Christian faith shaped his understanding of and approach to politics, society and civilisation, significant moments in Menzies' political career, particularly in the area of education, Menzies' liberal philosophy and the founding of The Liberal Party of Australia, and the contemporary fight over Menzies' legacy on the centre right in Australia today.



    Dr David Furse-Roberts is a Research Fellow at the Menzies Research Centre and works for a member of the NSW parliament. He is the author of God & Menzies: The Faith that Shaped a Prime Minister and His Nation, The Making of a Tory Evangelical: Lord Shaftesbury and the Evolving Character of Victorian Evangelicalism and the editor of several collections of political speeches by Australian prime ministers, including Menzies, John Howard and Tony Abbot. He has a PhD in history from the University of New South Wales.



    The Political Animals is hosted by Dr Jonathan Cole, an academic, writer, speaker and translator specialising in political theology: the intersection of religion and politics. Jonathan was a senior terrorism analyst at Australian intelligence agency the Office of National Assessments where he worked on Islamist terrorism and the global jihadist movement. He is the author of Christian Political Theology in an Age of Discontent: Mediating Scripture, Doctrine, and Political Reality. You can follow Jonathan and the show on Twitter and Facebook.

    • 1 hr 41 min
    Karl Marx: Myths, Misconceptions and Other Marxist Heresies, with Prof Wayne Hudson

    Karl Marx: Myths, Misconceptions and Other Marxist Heresies, with Prof Wayne Hudson

    Intellectual historian Wayne Hudson rejoins the show for a fresh look at the thought and impact of Karl Marx. They look at Marx's philosophy of freedom, the German intellectual tradition in which Marx arose, Marx's view of utopia, the negative impact of eschatology in Marx's thought, his poor philosophy of history and politics, his reception (or misreception) in Russia, China and the West, the Christian engagement of Marx, Marxist corruptions of Marx's thought, and the relevance of Marx to a critique of contemporary capitalism.



    Wayne Hudson is an adjunct professor at Charles Sturt University, the Australian National University and the University of Tasmania. He is a world authority on the philosophy of East German Marxist philosopher Ernst Bloch and author of The Marxist Philosophy of Ernst Bloch (1982) and Reforming Utopia (2003). He is also the author of The English Deists: Studies in Early Enlightenment (2009), Enlightenment and Modernity: The English Deists and Reform (2009), Atheism and Deism Revalued (2014) and Australian Religious Thought (2016). 



    The Political Animals is hosted by Jonathan Cole, an academic, writer, speaker and translator who specialises in political theology: the intersetion of religion and politics. He is the author of Christian Political Theology in an Age of Discontent: Mediating Scripture, Doctrine, and Political Reality. You can follow Jonathan and the show on Twitter and Facebook.

    • 1 hr 12 min
    Transhumanism and the Quest for Technological Immortality: A Conversation with Prof Ben Mitchell

    Transhumanism and the Quest for Technological Immortality: A Conversation with Prof Ben Mitchell

    In this episode, Jonathan talks to bioethicist Ben Mitchell about transhumanism. They discuss the origins, philosophy and goals of the transhumanist movement, the movement's desire for a post human future, the impact of technology on the human being, including the possibility of uploading consciousness to a computer, or merging the human brain with technology, and finally what it actually means to be human.



    Prof Ben Mitchell recently retired after serving ten years as the Graves Chair of Moral Philosophy at Union University, Jackson, Tennessee. He taught ethics at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Chicago, where he also served for a time as director of the Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity. He has served on the NIH Human Fetal Tissue Research Ethics Advisory Committee, been a consultant with the Center for Genetics & Public Policy at Johns Hopkins University and currently serves as Distinguished Fellow of the Tennessee Center for Bioethics & Culture.



    The Political Animals is hosted by Dr Jonathan Cole, an academic, writer, speaker and translator specialising in political theology: the intersection of religion and politics. Jonathan was a senior terrorism analyst at Australian intelligence agency the Office of National Assessments where he worked on Islamist terrorism and the global jihadist movement. He is the author of Christian Political Theology in an Age of Discontent: Mediating Scripture, Doctrine, and Political Reality. You can follow Jonathan and the show on Twitter and Facebook.

    • 1 hr 45 min

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