Ger / Rel 379 Summer II. Short version

Reading list:

Middle Ages:

Abelard: Dialogue: Dialogue – better and more complete translation

Hildegard of Bingen, background, illustrations

Hildegard: Divine Works; alternative link

Rudolf von Ems, Der guote Gerhart: Rudolf von Ems, Der guote Gerhart (an expression of tolerance in the Middle Ages)


Boccaccio: Decameron, 1st day, stories 2-3, 10th day, story 9 (Jews, Christians, and Muslims)


Martin Luther: 95 Theses, and many others  (Protestant Reformation)


Angelus Silesius (A Baroque Mystic)


Lessing: Lessing: Nathan the Wise (Enlightenment). Alternative link

19th century:

Friedrich Nietzsche, God is Dead (Anti-Enlightenment, “The Parable of the Madman”)

A selection of quotes by Nietzsche

Karl Marx, Tyler and Frazer, Sigmund Freud, Emil Durkheimer, et al.

We read on Marx and Engels, this text selection

20th century:

Karl Barth, The Humanity of God (Twentieth Century)

Alternative: excerpts

Declaration of Religious Freedom, Vatican IIDignitatis 



You must attend at least 10 out of 12 chatroom meetings, otherwise loss of points.  Only 9 meetings: – minus 10 pts, only 8 meetings, – minus 20, only 7, – minus 30, only 6 – minus 50, only 5 meetings: you failed the course. Always read the assigned texts before our chatroom meetings.

Syllabus for the Online Course (Summer II 2019)

July 7: First day of class: Introduction, read the survey online Wikipedia (history of religion in Germany)

Then, take a look at some of the public statements published by representatives of Religious departments across the country:

Swarthmore: Why study religion? 

UC Davis:

William A. Graham (Harvard):


July 8: 8 p.m (always the same time). chatroom meeting 1: please have read Emily Amt’s intro to the Middle Ages (we focus only on the religious aspects, so: history of the Christian church, Jews, Muslims)

July 10: chatroom meeting 2; Hildegard of Bingen, intro, and Divine Works

July 12: chatroom meeting 3: cont. Hildegard

July 15: chatroom meeting 4: Rudolf von Ems, The Good Gerhard (only pp. 29 to 40)

July 17: chatroom meeting 5; Rudolf von Ems, pp. 41-69

July 19: chatroom meeting 6; 1st essay due online 5 p.m.; Protestant Reformation: Martin Luther, 95 Theses (selection tba)

July 22: chatroom meeting 7; cont. with Martin Luther: 1. background, protest against the Church, Wycliffe and Hus, then the 95 theses

July 24: chatroom meeting 8; Angelus Silesius

July 28: chatroom meeting 9: Lessing, Acts 1-3

July 29: 2nd essay due online 5 p.m.; chatroom meeting 10: Lessing Acts 4-5

Aug. 01 (Thursday): chatroom meeting 11: Friedrich Nietzsche, “God is Dead””; Karl Marx

Aug. 04: I will hand out the questions for the final

Aug. 05: chatroom meeting 11; Sigmund Freud and Emil Durkheimer I think it will be enough if we focus on Barth only today. This is the last chat.

Aug. 06: Karl Barth, The Humanity of God (please read on your own)

Aug. 07: last day of class, final exam is due online: 12 p.m.; last meeting, we can meet in person, individually, or as a group, in my office, LSB 318

Possible Changes: The information contained in the course syllabus, other than the grade and absence policies, may be subject to change with reasonable advance notice, as deemed appropriate by the instructor.