Saturday, June 11, 2016

Cyber/Digital Theology: Rethinking about Our Relationship with God and Neighbor in the Digital Environment

Le Duc, Anthony.  Cyber/Digital Theology: Rethinking about Our  Relationship with God and Neighbor in the  Digital Environment. Religion and Social Communication. Vol. 13, No.2, 2015. 132-158.

The digital age with its multifarious technological developments, especially those pertaining to the Internet, has created many changes in human society—from the way we work and go about our daily activities to how we relate to the people and things around us. These changes are signifcant enough to warrant thoughtful, systematic refections and analysis regarding its cultural, sociological and theological impact on our lives. This paper attempts to do so with respect to the theological implications of the Internet, particularly in regards to human relationships with God and with one another. While philosophical, spiritual and theological inquiries could be made in regards to any or all religious traditions, this paper chooses to focus only on the Catholic Christian tradition. In addition, references to the Asian context are made in order to highlight the efects of the digital age on theology in the Asian cultural and religious milieu. The kind of theology discussed in this paper, for lack of a better term, is called “cyber/digital theology,” which requires some explanations to be clear what this really means. Although the terminology as well as its content remains in a formative stage, cyber/digital theology is an area worthy of more systematic study. This paper addresses the need for such an efort and proposes that the digital age provides new ways for the faithful to search for God, to envision one’s relationship with God and with neighbor, and to enter into these

Keywords: digital age, cybertheology, digital theology, cyber/digital theology

Friday, June 10, 2016

The Role of Social Media in Community Building for Illegal Vietnamese Migrant Workers in Thailand

Le Duc, Anthony. "The Role of Social Media in Community Building for Illegal Vietnamese Migrant Workers in Thailand." Journal of Identity and Migration Studies, Vol. 10, No. 1. Spring/Summer 2016.


Vietnamese migrant workers in Thailand along with those from other neighboring countries increasingly play an important role in the local economy. They are also an important source of income for the sending country. However, the illegal status of Vietnamese workers in Thailand presents a number of challenges both individually and communally. This paper explores the difficulties faced by Vietnamese who come to this country to make a living. These difficulties arise not only from having to work illegally, but also from social, cultural, and linguistic barriers that they must confront in the Thai environment. It proposes that these difficulties are partially made easier by the availability of social media, in particular Facebook. The prevalent use of Facebook among Vietnamese migrant workers in Thailand helps to build community by connecting family, friends, and faith groups together, by serving as a resource for important news and information pertaining to legal and social issues that directly affect them, and by serving as a means for community support in time of crisis. This paper argues that social media, as seen in the case of Vietnamese migrant workers, can effectively be used by community and religious leaders to provide various types of support for migrant workers living in diaspora.

Keywords: Vietnamese migrant workers, social media, Vietnamese in diaspora