The Reformation
Winter Semester 1999

Frank Luttmer
108 Classic Hall
M W F: 9-10, T R: 1-2

Course Description and Objectives

This seminar is designed to introduce students of the liberal arts to the sources and historiography of the European Reformation. It treats the Reformation both as a significant social and political revolution and as a defining moment in the history of Christian theology. Major themes include: late Medieval Christendom and the origins of the Reformation; the Reformation and Renaissance humanism; Martin Luther and the Lutheran Reformation; John Calvin and the Reformed Church; the Radical Reformation; the Reformation and the family; and the Catholic Reformation. In addition to increasing your understanding of the Reformation, the course is designed to strengthen your skills of historical analysis and interpretation and improve your research and writing skills.


1. Euan Cameron, The European Reformation
2. Desiderius Erasmus, The Praise of Folly and Other Writings, ed. Robert Adams
3. Martin Luther, Selections from his Writings, ed. John Dillenberger
4. Steven Ozment, Magdelena & Balthasar
5. Texts and resources from the internet


Final grades will be based on an evaluation of the following.

1. Two mid-term exams (15% each) and a final exam (20%)

2. A Research paper submitted in two drafts (15% for the first draft and 20% for the second)

3. Class participation (10%)

4. Intellectual Journals (5%)


Late Medieval Christendom and the Origins of the Reformation

January 13
Popular and Elite Religious Culture
Cameron, 1-19; Medieval Sermon Tales

January 15
Scholasticism, the Church, and Salvation
Cameron, 79-93; McGrath, 50-66 (reserve); Thomas Aquinas

January 20
Challenges to the Papacy and Church
Cameron, 20-61; Anti-clericalism; Councils

January 22
Alternatives to the Church?
Cameron, 61-78; Thomas a Kempis; Heresy

Northern Humanism

January 25
Humanism and the Reformation
McGrath, 27-49 (reserve); Erasmus, 3-25

January 27
Erasmus, 25-74

January 29
Erasmus, 74-87, 117-127, 228-251

February 1
Enchiridion (distributed in class)

February 3
Erasmus, 88-116, 142-150, 166-173, 212-227

February 5
Erasmus, 266-285, 297-308, 317-326

The Revolt from Rome

February 8
Luther's "Turmoils" and a "Popular Breeze"
Cameron, 99-110; Luther, 42-52, 403-431

February 10
Cameron, 168-185; Luther, 3-12;

February 12

Theology of the Reformers

February 15
Martin Luther
Cameron, 97; Luther, 13-41, 52-85

February 17
Martin Luther
Luther, 86-165

February 19
John Calvin

February 22
John Calvin

February 24
Salvation and Scripture
Cameron, 111-144; McGrath, 87-158 (optional)

February 26
Church and Sacraments
Cameron, 145-151, 156-167; McGrath, 159-201 (optional); Calvin;
Calvin, Institutes (London, 1587), 336v-337r (IV.i.1) (on reserve)

March 8
Church, State, and Political Theory
Cameron, 151-155; McGrath, 202-217 (optional); Luther, 363-402

March 10
Luther and Erasmus
Cameron, 186-193; Luther, 166-175

March 15
Luther and Erasmus
Luther, 175-203

Reformation and Society

March 19
Knights and Peasants
Cameron, 197-209, 293-313; Luther

March 22
Cameron, 210-265

March 24
Cameron, 266-291

The Radical Reformation

March 26
Cameron 317-338

March 29

March 31
Anabaptists and Spiritualists
Schleitheim Confession; Michael Sattler's Trial; Schwenckfeld

Reformation and Conflict

April 5
Politicians, Warriors, and Martyrs
Cameron, 339-388

April 7
Clergy and Laity
Cameron, 389-422; Gifford

Reformation and the Family

April 9
Magdelena & Balthasar
Ozment, 12-55

April 12
Magdelena & Balthasar
Ozment, 56-109

April 14
Magdelena & Balthasar
Ozment, 110-166

The Reformation and Culture

April 16
Art; Music

April 19

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