This major book is a unique stocktaking of the issues facing public theology at the beginning of the 21st century, combining retrospect and prospect. The contributors are leading Christian theologians and social theorists from Europe, North and South America, Africa, and Asia. Part one surveys the legacy of the 20th century and asks what should be carried over into the third millennium. There are authoritative essays on political and public theology in Germany, Argentina, South Africa and Britain. In part two, the contested legacy of modernity itself is considered, revisiting such ideas as freedom, toleration, human rights, pluralism, environmental stewardship and God in history. Part three addresses globalization, offering a range of critical interpretations of this key concept for public theology in the 21st century. The final part offers theological and ethical insight into some of the most pressing public issues of the new century such as medical ethics, punishment and forgiveness, inequality, social exclusion, and political participation.