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German History

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Bach and Pietism (Chuck King)

Today I’m happy to present a guest post on J. S. Bach and Pietism. It comes from Chuck King, visiting assistant professor of music at Trinity International University, where he teaches courses in music and worship and music history, as well as directing the Symphonic Band. He has three decades of experience as a pastoral minister … Continue reading

Tracking the Popularity of WWI in Books and Dissertations

Coming into this centenary year for World War I, there’s been a predictable resurgence of books written about that conflict. Which got me wondering how the war has ebbed and flowed over time as a subject for historians and other writers. I came up with two highly imperfect ways to satisfy this curiosity: I was challenged earlier this summer … Continue reading

When Did World War I Begin?

It is a date that marks the start of events that would go on to change the course of millions of lives – tomorrow is the 100th anniversary of the day Britain declared war on Germany and the First World War began. So said Britain’s The Independent, yesterday, of today. But is August 4, 1914 — with its … Continue reading

That Was The Week That Was

Here… • I could think of worse things than spending two days in Malibu, California talking about how historians use social media or help institutions manage change. • A Pietist model of Christian scholarship: scholarship that transforms scholars, and might not center on the production of knowledge. (Part three in that series will look to the … Continue reading

A Pietist Model of Christian Scholarship: Transformation and Character

In the first part of this post, I offered a Pietist critique of “the integration of faith and learning.” Today, as I continue to rework my recent presentation to Bethel’s annual faith-learning faculty workshop, I’ll tentatively suggest how Pietism might offer an alternative to the “integrationist” model of Christian scholarship. (I had intended this to be a … Continue reading

D-Day at 70

Seventy years ago today, Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy — opening the long-promised “second front” in the European experience of World War II and ultimately sealing the fate of the Third Reich. There’s plenty of coverage of the anniversary — let me just suggest a few links: • The Washington Post has a striking photo … Continue reading

Was WWI “Pointless Carnage”?

Yesterday Thomas Kidd’s interview of Philip Jenkins, his fellow Anxious Bencher, further whetted my appetite for Jenkins’ new book on religion and World War I, The Great and Holy War. But I was mostly struck by the way Jenkins pushed back against Kidd’s statement that “WWI is often remembered for unprecedented, but often pointless carnage, especially in the notorious experiences … Continue reading

Starvation as a Weapon

Today’s must-read article comes from Anne Applebaum, pointing to a perhaps underreported dimension of the crisis in Syria: mass starvation brought about by the policies of Bashar al-Assad. While the international community is haggling over [Assad's] chemical weapons, the stuff of modern nightmares, he is following the example of his medieval and his 20th-century predecessors and … Continue reading

Pietism and German Stereotypes

Pietism lives! In German stereotypes as reported on by The Economist… H/T John Lawyer for pointing me to an article on the cultural origins of the “Swabian housewife.” Invoked by German chancellor Angela Merkel and described by the premier of the state of Baden-Württemberg as “the starting point” for the German approach to fiscal management, the … Continue reading

This Day in History: A WWII Convergence

I don’t pretend that historical coincidences like this mean anything. But perhaps because I’ve just finished teaching a course on the history of World War II for the first time, I couldn’t help but notice a convergence of WWII-related anniversaries on my Twitter feed this morning: I’m sure there’s something profound to note about this … Continue reading

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