My dissertation, Offering a Sacrifice of Praise: Human Vocation, Culture-Making and Cultivating a Sabbath Imagination,
expands theological categories through consideration of artistic practice. In it I examine the human cultural vocation in relation to the created order at large, with particular reference to the writings of theologian Colin Gunton, and writer, poet, and cultural critic Wendell Berry. Gunton presents a generative vision of the human vocation in the created world as offering a “sacrifice of praise,” analogically echoing the Church’s eucharistic offering. However, Gunton’s work lacks concrete exemplification. Therefore I argue that the integrative imagination of Wendell Berry, as embodied by his account of poetry and his own poetic output, offers an example of a concrete and fully integrated vision of human cultural production – imagination, spirituality, economy, and the arts – that advance the main trajectories offered by Gunton.