Marginality // Jung Young Lee.


“Theology is autobiographical…”

As an Asian American, Jung Young Lee is a marginalized person. He is neither fully accepted by Asia nor America. He lives in the in-between (neither/nor), being pushed outward by both worlds. However, he also lives in the in-both (both/and), reaching inward into both worlds. This paradoxical place allows him to be in-beyond: total negation (in-between) and total affirmation (in-both). The fluidity and resistance to complete and stagnant conformity condition him, and other marginals, to participate in the marginal person par excellence: Jesus Christ, the marginal Jew. Jesus was both divinely marginalized (Incarnation) and humanly marginalized (outlier-Jew). Jesus is the “creative core” and the “margin of marginality.” Only in and through this marginal God-Man, can redemptive marginal existence flourish and overflow.

As a marginalized person myself, I applaud Jung Young Lee’s audacious take on a marginal theology–contra centralist theology. However, there are several theological claims he makes, or jumps to, that I cannot and would not make (whether he would blame my hesitance on my ‘centralist-brainwashed-mind’ or not cannot be determined nor assumed). He makes questionable claims that invite more question than clarity. But, perhaps, this is part of his assertion that theology should always be work in progress.


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