The Oxford Handbook of Early Christian Studies responds to and celebrates the explosion of research in this inter-disciplinary field over recent decades. It is thematically arranged to encompass history, literature, thought, practices, and material culture. Whilst the burgeoning of scholarly work has made it impossible for any one scholar to maintain expertise in every aspect of the discipline, this handbook seeks to aid both the new researcher in the field andthe scholar entering an unfamiliar sub-specialty. Each chapter orients readers to the current 'state of the question' in a given area, reflecting on key research issues to date, highlighting primarysources and giving suggestions as to the likely direction of future work. The Handbook takes the period 100 to 600 CE as a chronological span and examines the vast geographical area impacted by the early church, in Western and Eastern late antiquity.
Presents a survey of research in this technical and diverse field that is useful for scholars and students who need to command linguistic, historical, literary, and philosophical skills. This title includes forty-five contributions that review and analyse thinking and work, and examines the progress and direction of the debates.
The Oxford Handbook of Early Christian Apocrypha addresses issues and themes that arise in the study of early Christian apocryphal literature. It discusses key texts including the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Mary, the Gospel of Peter, letters attributed to Paul, Peter, and Jesus, and acts and apocalypses written about or attributed to different apostles. Part One consists of authoritative surveys of the main branches of apocryphal literature (gospels, acts, epistles, apocalypses, and related literature) and Part Two considers key issues that they raise. These include their contribution to our understanding of developing theological understandings of Jesus, the apostles and other important figures such as Mary. It also addresses the value of these texts as potential sources for knowledge of the historical Jesus, and for debates about Jewish-Christian relations, the practice of Christian worship, and developing understandings of asceticism, gender and sexuality, etc. The volume also considers questions such as which ancient readers read early Christian apocrypha, their place in Christian spirituality, and their place in contemporary popular culture and contemporary theological discourse.
This volume brings together the latest scholarship on the beliefs, practices, and institutions of the Christian Church between 400 and 1500 AD. The Oxford Handbook of Medieval Christianity is about the beliefs, practices, and institutions of the Roman Church between 400 and 1500AD, and brings together in one volume a host of cutting-edge analysis. The book does not primarily provide a chronological narrative, but rather seeks to demonstrate the variety, change, and complexity of religion across this long period, and the numerous different ways in which modern scholarship can approach it. It presents the work of thirty academic authors, from the US, the UK, and Europe, addressing topics that range from early medieval monasticism to late medieval mysticism, from the material wealth of the Church to the spiritual exercises through which certain believers might attempt to improve their souls. Each chapter tells a story, but seeks also to ask how and why "Christianity" took on a particular shape at a particular moment, paying attention to both the spiritual and otherwordly aspects of religion, and the very material and political contexts in which they were often embedded. The book aims to be an indispensable guide to future discussion in the field--Publisher description.
This Handbook explores the world of Asian Christianity and its manifold expressions, including worship, theology, spirituality, inter-religious relations, interventions in society, and mission. The volume's contributors' deconstruct many of the widespread misconceptions and interpretations of Christianity in Asia. The essays analyze how the spread of Christianity in Asia is linked with the socio-political and cultural processes of colonization, decolonization, modernization, democratization, identity construction of social groups, and various social movements. With a particular focus on inter-religious encounters and the theological and spiritual paradigms emerging in the continent, the volume provides alternative frames for understanding the phenomenon of conversion and shows how the scriptures of other religious traditions are used in the practice of Christianity in Asia. The Oxford Handbook of Christianity in Asia draws insightful conclusions on the historical, contemporary, and future trajectory of its subject by combining the contributions of scholars in a wide variety of disciplines, including theology, sociology, history, political science, and cultural studies.
Author: Elizabeth Jeffreys,John F. Haldon,Robin Cormack
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Category: Literary Criticism
The Handbook contains eighty-nine articles by leading experts on all significant aspects of the diverse and fast-growing field of Byzantine Studies, which deals with the history and culture of the Byzantine Empire, the eastern half of the Late Roman Empire, from the fourth to the fourteenth century.
Many important contemporary debates cross economics and religion, in turn raising questions about the relationship between the two fields. This book, edited by a leader in the new interdisciplinary field of economics and religion and with contributions by experts on different aspects of the relationship between economics and Christianity, maps the current state of scholarship and points to new directions for the field. It covers the history of the relationship between economics and Christianity, economic thinking in the main Christian traditions, and the role of religion in economic development, as well as new work on the economics of religious behavior and religious markets and topics of debate between economists and theologians. It is essential reading for economists concerned with the foundations of their discipline, historians, moral philosophers, theologians seeking to engage with economics, and public policy researchers and practitioners.
David K. Pettegrew,William Rodney Caraher,Thomas W. Davis
Author: David K. Pettegrew,William Rodney Caraher,Thomas W. Davis
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Category: Christian antiquities
"This handbook brings together work by leading scholars of the archaeology of early Christianity in the Mediterranean and surrounding regions. The 34 essays to this volume ground the history, culture, and society of the first seven centuries of Christianity in the latest currents of archaeological method, theory, and research."--
Scholars of religion have long assumed that ritual and belief constitute the fundamental building blocks of religious traditions and that these two components of religion are interrelated and interdependent in significant ways. Generations of New Testament and Early Christian scholars have produced detailed analyses of the belief systems of nascent Christian communities, including their ideological and political dimensions, but have by and large ignored ritual as an important element of early Christian religion and as a factor contributing to the rise and the organization of the movement. In recent years, however, scholars of early Christianity have begun to use ritual as an analytical tool for describing and explaining Christian origins and the early history of the movement. Such a development has created a momentum toward producing a more comprehensive volume on the ritual world of Early Christianity employing advances made in the field of ritual studies. The Oxford Handbook of Early Christian Ritual gives a manifold account of the ritual world of early Christianity from the beginning of the movement up to the end of the fifth century. The volume introduces relevant theories and approaches; central topics of ritual life in the cultural world of early Christianity; and important Christian ritual themes and practices in emerging Christian groups and factions.
The Oxford Handbook of Late Antiquity offers an innovative overview of a period (c. 300-700 CE) that has become increasingly central to scholarly debates over the history of western and Middle Eastern civilizations. This volume covers such pivotal events as the fall of Rome, the rise of Christianity, the origins of Islam, and the early formation of Byzantium and the European Middle Ages. These events are set in the context of widespread literary, artistic, cultural, and religious change during the period. The geographical scope of this Handbook is unparalleled among comparable surveys of Late Antiquity; Arabia, Egypt, Central Asia, and the Balkans all receive dedicated treatments, while the scope extends to the western kingdoms, and North Africa in the West. Furthermore, from economic theory and slavery to Greek and Latin poetry, Syriac and Coptic literature, sites of religious devotion, and many others, this Handbook covers a wide range of topics that will appeal to scholars from a diverse array of disciplines. The Oxford Handbook of Late Antiquity engages the perennially valuable questions about the end of the ancient world and the beginning of the medieval, while providing a much-needed touchstone for the study of Late Antiquity itself.
This wide-ranging volume looks at the reception history of the Bible's many texts; Part I surveys the outline, form, and content of twelve key biblical books that have been influential in the history of interpretation. Part II offers a series of in-depth case studies of the interpretation of particular biblical passages or books.
This handbook provides an in-depth survey of historical readings of Quakerism; a treatment of its key theological premises and its links with wider Christian thinking; an analysis of its distinctive ecclesiastical forms and practices; chapters on its social, economic, political, and ethical outcomes; as well as an extensive bibliography.
The Oxford Handbook of Religion and Race in American History brings together a number of established scholars, as well as younger scholars on the rise, to provide a scholarly overview for those interested in the role of religion and race in American history. Thirty-four scholars from the fields of History, Religious Studies, Sociology, Anthropology, and more investigate the complex interdependencies of religion and race from pre-Columbian origins to the present. The volume addresses the religious experience, social realities, theologies, and sociologies of racialized groups in American religious history, as well as the ways that religious myths, institutions, and practices contributed to their racialization. Part One begins with a broad introductory survey outlining some of the major terms and explaining the intersections of race and religions in various traditions and cultures across time. Part Two provides chronologically arranged accounts of specific historical periods that follow a narrative of religion and race through four-plus centuries. Taken together, The Oxford Handbook of Religion and Race in American History provides a reliable scholarly text and resource to summarize and guide work in this subject, and to help make sense of contemporary issues and dilemmas.
The Oxford Handbook of Natural Theology is the first collection to consider the full breadth of natural theology from both historical and contemporary perspectives and to bring together leading scholars to offer accessible high-level accounts of the major themes. The volume embodies and develops the recent revival of interest in natural theology as a topic of serious critical engagement. Frequently misunderstood or polemicized, natural theology is an under-studied yet persistent and pervasive presence throughout the history of thought about ultimate reality - from the classical Greek theology of the philosophers to twenty-first-century debates in science and religion. Of interest to students and scholars from a wide range of disciplines, this authoritative handbook draws on the very best of contemporary scholarship to present a critical overview of the subject area. Thirty-eight new essays trace the transformations of natural theology in different historical and religious contexts, the place of natural theology in different philosophical traditions and diverse scientific disciplines, and the various cultural and aesthetic approaches to natural theology to reveal a rich seam of multi-faceted theological reflection rooted in human nature and the environments within which we find ourselves.
Author: Ulrich L. Lehner,Richard A. Muller,A.G. Roeber
Publisher: Oxford University Press
The Oxford Handbook of Early Modern Theology, 1600-1800 will offer a comprehensive and reliable introduction to Christian theological literature originating in Western Europe from, roughly, the end of the French Wars of Religion (1598) to the Congress of Vienna (1815). Using a variety of approaches, the contributors examine theology spanning from Bossuet to Jonathan Edwards. They review the major forms of early modern theology, such as Cartesian scholasticism, Enlightenment, and early Romanticism; sketch the teachings of major theological concepts, along with important historical developments; introduce the principal practitioners of each kind of theology and delineate their particular theological contributions and stresses; and depict the engagement by early modern theologians with other religions or churches, such Judaism, Islam, and the eastern Church. Combining contributions from top scholars in the field, this will be an invaluable resource for understanding a complex and varied body of research.
The Oxford Handbook of the Study of Religions provides a comprehensive overview of the academic study of religions. Written by an international team of leading scholars, its fifty-one chapters are divided thematically into seven sections. The first section addresses five major conceptual aspects of research on religion. Part two surveys eleven main frameworks of analysis, interpretation, and explanation of religion. Reflecting recent turns in the humanities and social sciences, part three considers eight forms of the expression of religion. Part four provides a discussion of the ways societies and religions, or religious organizations, are shaped by different forms of allocation of resources (i.e., economy). Other chapters in this section consider law, the media, nature, medicine, politics, science, sports, and tourism. Part five reviews important developments, distinctions, and arguments for each of the selected topics. The study of religion addresses religion as a historical phenomenon and part six looks at seven historical processes. Religion is studied in various ways by many disciplines, and this Handbook shows that the study of religion is an academic discipline in its own right. The disciplinary profile of this volume is reflected in part seven, which considers the history of the discipline and its relevance. Each chapter in the Handbook references at least two different religions to provide fresh and innovative perspectives on key issues in the field. This authoritative collection will advance the state of the discipline and is an invaluable reference for students and scholars.
Comprised of contributions from scholars across the globe, The Oxford Handbook to Biblical Narrative is a state-of-the-art anthology, offering critical treatments of both the Bible's narratives and topics related to the Bible's narrative constructions. The Handbook covers the Bible's narrative literature, from Genesis to Revelation, providing concise overviews of literary-critical scholarship as well as innovative readings of individual narratives informed by a variety of methodological approaches and theoretical frameworks. The volume as a whole combines literary sensitivities with the traditional historical and sociological questions of biblical criticism and puts biblical studies into intentional conversation with other disciplines in the humanities. It reframes biblical literature in a way that highlights its aesthetic characteristics, its ethical and religious appeal, its organic qualities as communal literature, its witness to various forms of social and political negotiation, and its uncanny power to affect readers and hearers across disparate time-frames and global communities.
This volume highlights the relevance of globalization and the insights of gender studies and religious studies for feminist theology. It focuses on the changing global contexts for the field and its movement towards new models of theology, distinct from the forms of traditional Christian systematic theology and of secular feminism.
Eschatology is the study of the last things: death, judgment, the afterlife, and the end of the world. Through centuries of Christian thoughtfrom the early Church fathers through the Middle Ages and the Reformationthese issues were of the utmost importance. In other religions, too, eschatological concerns were central. After the Enlightenment, though, many religious thinkers began to downplay the importance of eschatology which, in light of rationalism, came to be seen as something of an embarrassment. The twentieth century, however, saw the rise of phenomena that placed eschatology back at the forefront of religious thought. From the rapid expansion of fundamentalist forms of Christianity, with their focus on the end times; to the proliferation of apocalyptic new religious movements; to the recent (and very public) debates about suicide, martyrdom, and paradise in Islam, interest in eschatology is once again on the rise. In addition to its popular resurgence, in recent years some of the worlds most important theologians have returned eschatology to its former position of prominence. The Oxford Handbook of Eschatology will provide an important critical survey of this diverse body of thought and practice from a variety of perspectives: biblical, historical, theological, philosophical, and cultural. This volume will be the primary resource for students, scholars, and others interested in questions of our ultimate existence.
The Oxford Handbook of Systematic Theology brings together a set of original and authoritative accounts of all the major areas of current research in Christian systematic theology, offering a thorough survey of the state of the discipline and of its prospects for those undertaking research and teaching in the field. The Handbook engages in a comprehensive examination of themes and approaches, guiding the reader through current debates and literatures in the context of the historical development of systematic theological reflection. Organized thematically, it treats in detail the full array of topics in systematic theology, as well as questions of its sources and norms, its relation to other theological and non-theological fields of enquiry, and some major trends in current work. Each chapter provides an analysis of research and debate on its topic. The focus is on doctrinal (rather than historical) questions, and on major (rather than ephemeral) debates. The aim is to stimulate readers to reach theological judgements on the basis of consideration of the range of opinion. Drawn from Europe, the UK, and North America, the authors are all leading practitioners of the discipline. Readers will find expert guidance as well as creative suggestions about the future direction of the study of Christian doctrine.