The seeds of the swift and sweeping religious movement that turned great numbers of Europeans into Protestants in the early 1500s had been sown far back in the late Middle Ages. In this book, Steven Ozment traces the growth and dispersal of dissenting ideologies through three centuries to their explosive burgeoning in the 1500s. He elucidates with great clarity the complex philosophical and theological issues that inspired antagonistic schools, traditions, and movements from Aquinas to Calvin.
In this study of new atheism and religious fundamentalism, this book advances two provocative - and surprising - arguments. Liam Jerrold Fraser argues that atheism and Protestant fundamentalism in Britain and America share a common historical origin in the English Reformation, and the crisis of authority inaugurated by the Reformers. This common origin generated two presuppositions crucial for both movements: a literalist understanding of scripture, and a disruptive understanding of divine activity in nature. Through an analysis of contemporary new atheist and Protestant fundamentalist texts, Fraser shows that these presuppositions continue to structure both groups, and support a range of shared biblical, scientific, and theological beliefs. Their common historical and intellectual structure ensures that new atheism and Protestant fundamentalism - while on the surface irreconcilably opposed - share a secret sympathy with one another, yet one which leaves them unstable, inconsistent, and unsustainable.
Much of the emerging protestantism of the sixteenth century produced a Reformation in conscious opposition to formal philosophy. Nevertheless, sectors of the Reformation produced a spiritualizing form of Platonism in the drive for correct devotion. Out of an understandable fear of idolatry or displacement of the uniquely redemptive place of Christ, Christian piety moved away from the senses and the material world - freshly uncovered in the Reformation. This volume argues, however, that in the quest for restoring "true religion", sectors of the Protestant tradition impugned too severely the material components of prior Christian devotion. Larry Harwood argues that a similar spiritualizing tendency can be found in other Christian traditions, but that its applicability to the particulars of the Christian religion is nevertheless questionable. Moreover, in that quest of a spiritualizing Protestant "true religion", the Christian God could shade toward the conceptual god of the philosophers, with devotees construed as rationalist philosophers. Part of the paradoxical result was to propel the Protestant devotee toward a denuded worship for material worshipers of the Christian God who became flesh.
England's Long Reformation" brings together a distinguished team of scholars, who seek to advance beyond current debates concerning the English Reformation. It puts the religious changes of the 16th century in longer perspective than has been traditional and counters the recent emphasis on the popularity of pre-Reformation Catholicism. Instead the case is argued for an underlying trajectory of evangelical activity from the 1520s. The contributors also examine some of the hybrid religious forms which developed and the propagation of the more uncompromising messages of Puritanism and Counter-Reformed Catholicism.; Taking their cue fom continental historians, the authors demonstrate the insights which can be derived by taking a long view of the Reformation in England. The processes of Protestantization and indeed Christianization were involved, with each new generation needing to be won over or at least re- educated. The interaction of religion and society - particularly as regards the so-called "reformation of manners" - is another central theme. Ranging from Tudor Norwich to Hanoverian Bristol, the work collectively breaks down some of the artificial barriers created by periodization and encourages a new way of looking at the English Reformation. This volume should prove valuable reading for those interested in the making of a Protestant nation.
The last years of Henry VIII's life, 1539-47, have conventionally been seen as a time when the king persecuted Protestants. This book argues that Henry's policies were much more ambiguous; that he continued to give support to Protestantism and that many accordingly also remained loyal to him. It also examines why the Protestants eventually adopted a more radical, oppositional stance, and argues that English Protestantism's eventual identity was determined during these years.
The early transition from Catholicism to Protestantism was a complicated journey for England, as individuals sorted out their spiritual beliefs, chose their political allegiances, and confronted an array of religious differences that had sprung forth in their society since the reign of Henry VIII. Inner anxieties often translated into outward violence. Amidst this turmoil the poet and Protestant preacher John Donne (1572-1631) emerged as a central figure, one who encouraged peace among Christians. Raised a Catholic but ordained in 1615 as an Anglican clergyman, Donne publicly identified himself with Protestantism, and yet scholars have long questioned his theological orientation. Drawing upon recent scholarship in church history, the authors of this collection reconsider Donne's relationship to Protestantism and clearly demonstrate the political and theological impact of the Reformation on his life and writings. The collection includes thirteen essays that together place Donne broadly in the context of English and European traditions and explore his divine poetry, his prose work, the Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, and his sermons. It becomes clear that in adopting the values of the Reformation, Donne does not completely reject everything from his Catholic background. Rather, the clash of religion erupts in his work in both moving and disconcerting ways. This collection offers a fresh understanding of Donne's hard-won irenicism, which he achieved at great personal and professional risk.
Publication Date: Louisville, Kentucky : Westminster John Knox Press, 2018.
From a distinguished assembly of twelve internationally acclaimed scholars comes this rich, interdisciplinary study that explores the Protestant Reformation and its revolutionary impact on the church and the world. The Reformation revolutionized the church and spiritual life as well as art, music, literature, architecture, and aesthetics. It transformed economics, trade, banking, and more--transformations that shifted power away from the church to the state, unleashing radical new campaigns for freedom, equality, democracy, and constitutional order. In this authoritative but accessible study, the authors analyze the kaleidoscopic impact of the Reformation over the past 500 years--for better or worse, for richer or poorer, for the West and increasingly for the world.
Italian sermons tell a story of the Reformation that credits preachers with using the pulpit, pen, and printing press to keep Italy Catholic when the region's violent religious wars made the future uncertain, and with fashioning a post-Reformation Catholicism that would survive the competition and religious choice of their own time and ours.
The letters of Calvin and Sadoleto comprise one of the most interesting exchanges of Catholic-Protestant views of the Reformation era. This book provides an introduction to the great religious controversy of the 16th.
Religion in Tudor England offers readers the prose and the poetry, the theology and the spirituality, the prayers and the polemics, of one of the most important epochs in the making of modern Christianity. Beginning with King Henry VII, the Tudors' reign included the break with Rome and the rise of English Protestantism, a series of religiously inspired revolts, the burnings of nearly three hundred Protestants for heresy under Queen Mary, the executions of scores of Catholics for treason under Queen Elizabeth, and the emergence of the Puritan challenge to the Church of England. Moreover, the English Reformation coincided with the English Renaissance, and the foremost religious thinkers of the age, Catholic as well as Protestant, are also among the greatest of English prose stylists. The sources in this unique anthology, accidentals modernized and accompanied by careful notes and detailed historical, literary, and theological introductions, immerse readers in this world and allow them to explore comprehensively--for the first time--what was lost, what was transformed, and what was preserved in the English Reformation.
Women and the Reformation gathers historical materials and personal accounts to provide a comprehensive and accessible look at the status and contributions of women as leaders in the 16th century Protestant world. Explores the new and expanded role as core participants in Christian life that women experienced during the Reformation Examines diverse individual stories from women of the times, ranging from biographical sketches of the ex-nun Katharina von Bora Luther and Queen Jeanne d'Albret, to the prophetess Ursula Jost and the learned Olimpia Fulvia Morata Brings together social history and theology to provide a groundbreaking volume on the theological effects that these women had on Christian life and spirituality Accompanied by a website at www.blackwellpublishing.com/stjerna offering student's access to the writings by the women featured in the book