An Epistemology of Concrete Others Based on the Two-nature Christology for Solidarity of Others in the Age of Globalization

Hochul Kwak


This article proposes an epistemology of concrete others as a foundation for solidarity of others, which is to protect the vulnerable who are experiencing economic, political, and cultural exploitation in a globalizing world. The vulnerable are exposed to two kinds of violence: one is violence from the absolutization of otherness, transcendence, difference; the other is from the absolutization of solidarity, immanence, or homogeneity. While the absolutization of solidarity justifies oppression of others, the absolutization of difference enervates resistance of those who are oppressed others. In order to resist against oppression and violence, the oppressed people need to have solidarity with others. To work toward solidarity of others, one should sublate both the absolutization of solidarity and the absolutization of otherness, since absolutization of each has justified injustice, indifference, and oppression. Sublation of both the absolutization of solidarity (an epistemology of homogeneity) and the absolutization of otherness (an epistemology of difference) leads to a dialectic epistemology: an epistemology of concrete others. An epistemology of concrete others is based on the two-nature Christology and the Trinitarianism, which confirms the hypostatic union between humanity and divinity, transcendence and immanence, particularity and universality, and the like. An epistemology of concrete others emphasizes both otherness and homogeneity, transcendence and immanence, and difference and commonness. An epistemology of concrete others necessitates and suffices for solidarity with others, with which the vulnerable can resist oppression and indifference caused by absolutization of solidarity and difference, respectively.


Difference, Homogeneity, Solidarity of Others, Concrete Others, Absolutization, Epistemology

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