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Heythrop - Contemporary Christian Thought

(Text as at 20/11/2010 07:23:31)

This is the control document for my activities on the Contemporary Christian Thought module of the MA Philosophy and Religion course at Heythrop.

The module outline for 2010/111 is now on the web (Link (Defunct)). I might note here that at the induction evening, this course was singled out by David Lonsdale (the Dean of Postgraduate Studies) as a particular privilege to attend.

The Key Points2 are:-

  1. Module Co-ordinator: John McDade (Link (Defunct))
  2. Module aims:
    • To present the main features of contemporary Christian thought in relation to God, Christ and human destiny
    • To consider Christian faith in its relation to human religiosity, philosophical inquiry and Scriptural interpretation.
    • To address questions of Christian identity in relation to its source in Judaism and its universal mission.
  3. Learning outcomes: Students will:-
    • Consider the role of Trinitarian theology in Christianity and its relation to other monotheistic traditions,
    • Consider questions relating to the person and work of Christ and the traditions of his unique status in relation to pluralism and unbelief,
    • Consider different approaches to the historical Jesus,
    • Investigate modern theological engagements between Judaism, Islam and Christianity in relation to revelation and Scriptures,
    • Consider the theological anthropologies which Christian thought develops.
  4. Module content:
    • Barth's doctrine of Election;
    • Rahner's transcendental anthropology;
    • The Trinity and oneness of God;
    • Vatican II on the relation to other religions;
    • The impact of Jewish-Christian dialogue and Christian-Islamic dialogue on modern Christian self-definition;
    • ’Anonymous Christianity' and the universal significance of Christ;
    • Simone Weil on God, humanity and kenosis;
    • Modern approaches to the historical Jesus;
    • The roots and nature of modern atheism.
  5. Learning and teaching methods: Lectures and guided discussions.
  6. Essential Texts3 :-
  7. Recommended Texts:
  8. Background5 Reading: "Ford (David F.) & Muers (Rachel), Eds. - The Modern Theologians: An Introduction to Christian Theology Since 1918".
  9. In-course feedback:
    • Coursework will be returned with individual comments and individual guidance about how it could be improved.
    • Assistance and feedback will be provided for topic selection and preparation of the essay in a form of tutorial.
  10. Assessment:
    • Two Coursework tasks of 20% each, and
    • Final Essay of 4,000 words: 60%.

In-Page Footnotes:

Footnote 1: The 2009/10 equivalent course - Twentieth Century Religious Thought (Link (Defunct)) – was significantly different

Footnote 2: I’ve taken the liberty of re-ordering a few points where the module outline seemed a bit scruffy

Footnote 3: I think photocopies of the essential passages will be distributed, but where available, and economically sensible, I’ve obtained the full texts.

Footnote 4: I’m not sure whether these are essays by Simone Weil, or what. They are not in "Weil (Simone) - Gravity and Grace".

Footnote 5: I see that the difficult "Lonergan (Bernard J.F.) - Method in Theology" – one of the texts recommended for preliminary reading – is not mentioned. Probably just as well – I’ll give up on the book after completing the first chapter

Printable Versions:

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20/11/2010 07:23:31 None available Heythrop - MA Philosophy and Religion

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References & Reading List

Author Title Medium Source Read?
Barth (Karl) Church Dogmatics: Volume II - The Doctrine of God - First Half-Volume Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Barth (Karl) - Church Dogmatics: Volume II - The Doctrine of God - First Half-Volume 0%
Gallagher (Michael Paul) What are They Saying About Unbelief? Book - Cited Low Quality Abstract Gallagher (Michael Paul) - What are They Saying About Unbelief? 3%
Weil (Simone) Gravity and Grace Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Weil (Simone) - Gravity and Grace 1%
Wright (N.T.) Jesus and the Victory of God Book - Cited Medium Quality Abstract Wright (N.T.) - Jesus and the Victory of God 2%

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