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Confessionalization · Enlightenment · Pluralization
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Christianity did not reach the modern age by straight paths, but by crooked ones: For two centuries after the Reformation, Catholics and Protestants fought over the truth of their religion. They waged merciless wars and concluded fragile peace treaties. They invested in education and culture. They professionalized clerics and civil servants and tried harder than ever to shape the everyday lives of ordinary people in the villages and towns. They persecuted witches and learned to control the fear of magic.
The Enlightenment, the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars created completely new conditions for making Christianity plausible for the modern age.
The book describes the enormous efforts under which Catholic and Protestant men and women faced the upheavals between the Reformation and the Revolution. Many of these efforts were similar. And yet ‘religious knowledge’ developed significantly apart.
Introducing a Constructive Encounter
Did Orthodoxy come to a halt before modernity? Does Orthodox Christian theology function only in traditional contexts borrowing schemes and forms of rural society, to which the liturgical and theological symbolisms, the rhetoric models of preaching, the structures of church administration and its views on the relation between religion, politics, and secular society are closely linked?
Has Orthodoxy accepted the consequences of modernity or the Orthodox still feel a nostalgia for pre-modern forms of organization and structures of a glorified past, following in this way fundamentalism? Did even the movement called Return to the Fathers, as it was understood, and in spite of its initially renewal character, functioned unwittingly as a barrier, against modernity and its challenges?
Modernity and post-modernity constitute, however, the broader historical, social and cultural context within which the Church is called to accomplish its mission and to ceaselessly incarnate the Christian truth.
Volume Editor:
This collection of essays presents various aspects of a group of participants in the Thirty Years War which hitherto received only cursory attention in international research context: the princes of Transylvania. Experts of the specific fields present up-to-date summaries as well as fresh results on questions of military history, diplomatic contacts, war finances, media history and discourses in political communication related to the activities of Gábor Bethlen and György Rákóczi I. Special attention is dedicated to the peculiar characteristic of the Transylvanian involvement in the great European conflict – the Ottoman threat, which derived from the fact that the principality was one of the sultan’s Christian tributaries.
This volume takes us back to the roots of Christianity and exemplifies the significance of Syriac Theology for our time.
Bringing together articles by scholars from diverse disciplines, this volume aims at a deeper understanding of the legacy, importance, and challenges of Syriac Theology. The articles in the first part of the volume focus on the biblical, exegetical, and christological tradition of the Syriac Orthodox Church. The articles in the second part of the volume explore the dialogical intertextuality between Syriac Christianity, Rabbinic Judaism, and the Quran.
The Origins of the Notion in Gregory of Nyssa and its Influence unto the Italian Renaissance
This book explores the invention, significance and actual history of self-creative freedom from Late Antiquity to the Renaissance.
Gregory of Nyssa, the great Cappadocian Father of the IV century, is not as yet deemed one of the outstanding figures in our Histories of Philosophy. However, this monograph argues that his remarkable theories of freedom transcend his own time and, traversing centuries of Medieval and Byzantine history, they become one of the core theoretical inspirations for the anthropological revolution of the Quattrocento, as evinced in eminent philosophers such as Nicholas of Cusa and Giovanni Pico della Mirandola. Our research methodology integrates a thorough study of the Greek and Latin sources ‒ resorting to Philology, Palaeography and Codicology ‒ with a systematic historical and philosophical analysis of different theories and argumentative strategies.
Art, Material Culture, and British-Russian Relations
Volume Editor:
“Courtly Gifts and Cultural Diplomacy” explores the history of British-Russian state relations from the perspective of art and material culture. This richly illustrated book presents manifold practices of courtly gift-giving and vivid case studies of British-Russian artistic diplomacy over the centuries. It traces a visual and material history of cross-cultural dialogue that starts with an early English map of Russia made in the 16th century and ends with gifts of Fabergé art objects and domestic photographs exchanged between the British royal family and the family of Tsar Nicholas II in late Imperial Russia. Twelve expert authors from academia, the arts, and the museum sectors in Britain, Russia, and the United States present new narratives and critical interpretations based on material from previously unexplored archives. Their diverse approaches reveal the importance of artistic diplomacy and the agency of gifts of art and material culture in courtly and state relations.
The articles in the book show that today’s Orthodox theology is constructively relating to modernity in politics, society and culture.
In 20 articles very prominent Orthodox theologians and experts on Orthodox theology and Orthodox Christianity from academic fields like sociology of religion or political studies are discussing, in what sense politics, society and culture are considered in Orthodox Theology in a global horizon. Contributors are Alfons Brüning, Ina Merdjanova, Nathaniel Wood, Cyril Hovorun, Dimitrios Moschos, Lucien Turcescu, K. M. George (Kondortha), Pantelis Kalaitzidis, Branko Sekulić, Georgios Vlantis, Nikolaos Asproulis, Atanas Slavov, Sveto Riboloff, Haralambos Ventis, Ioannis Kaminis, Irena Pavlović, Athanasios N. Papathanasiou, Chris Durante, Kateřina Kočandrle Bauer, Vasilios N. Makrides.
Open Access
Leading historians examine the meaning of being Jewish from early-modern times to the present day.
Classification is an inherent feature of all societies. The distinction between Jews and non-Jews has been a major theme of Western society for over two millennia. In the middle of the twentieth century, dire consequences were associated with being Jewish. Even after the Shoah, the labelling of Jews as “other” continued. In this book, leading historians including Michael Brenner, Elisheva Carlebach and Michael Miller illuminate the meaning of Jewishness from pre-modern and early-modern times to the present day. Their studies offer new perspectives on constructing and experiencing Jewish identity.
Open Access
The Polish-Ukrainian Conflict 1943–1947
Series:  FOKUS, Volume: 6
Author:
This is the first book available in English to comprehensively address the complicated subject of Polish-Ukrainian relations during and immediately after World War II. Polish-Ukrainian relations in the twentieth century are a topic that invariably engages historians, politicians, and public opinion in Poland and Ukraine. Many valuable works have been written on the subject, but many are distorting historical truth and collective memories, sometimes making today’s mutual relations problematic. Grzegorz Motyka’s book is a careful account of the most difficult period in Polish-Ukrainian relations, beginning in 1943 with the start of the Volhynian massacre and ending with the “Vistula” action in 1947. By discussing episodes of common history in an accessible manner, Professor Motyka presents an impartial picture of Polish-Ukrainian relations, devoid of national martyrology. In extremely difficult times, it builds a bridge for mutual understanding across historical divides.
Aramaic, Hebrew, and Greek
Author:
This study brings together all ancient evidence to tell the story of the divine name, YHWH, as it travels in Aramaic, Hebrew, and Greek through the Second Temple period, the most formative era of Judaism.
During the Second Temple period (516 BCE–70 CE), Jews became reticent to speak and write the divine name, YHWH, also known by its four letters in Greek as the tetragrammaton. Priestly, pious, and scribal circles limitted the use of God’s name, and then it disappeared. The variables are poorly understood and the evidence is scattered. This study brings together all ancient Jewish literary and epigraphic evidence in Aramaic, Hebrew, and Greek to describe how, when, and in what sources Jews either used or avoided the divine name. Instead of a diachronic contrast from use to avoidance, as is often the scholarly assumption, the evidence suggests diverse and overlapping naming practices that draw specific meaning from linguistic, geographic, and social contexts.