This article questions the culturalist and civilizational taxonomies of postsecular theory by redirecting attention toward the practical consequences of public theology in the realm of neoliberal welfare reform. Tracing the simultaneous rise of faith-based welfare and the religious Right in the United Kingdom, the United States, the Middle East, and India, it argues that the postsecular posture of anticapitalist critique testifies at best to a misunderstanding of the constitutive relationship between the neoliberal and the neopaternal. Returning to Marx, the essay posits (contra Polanyi) that capital demands the constant reassertion of fundamental value, even while it works to undermine all historically specific instances of foundation.

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