Religious Studies | Philosophical Approaches to Religion: History and Religion
R581 | 25874 | Levene, N.


“History,” writes Paul Veyne, “is a true novel [and] historians tell
of true events in which man is the actor.” This course focuses on
the relationship between history and religion—between history as an
account of human events in time and religion as an account of the
quest for human origins and ends. We will focus particularly on the
relationship between narration and truth and on the role of the
human as the subject and pivot of analysis. The course will examine
both writers who seek to link history with some larger purpose
(e.g., providence) as well as those who seek to limit its scope to
the genealogy of values or the telling of true stories. Particular
attention will be paid to such issues as interpretation,
temporality, objectivity, perspective, and the relationship between
the divine, the human, and the natural, as well as to images of the
West, the Greek, the Jew, the Christian, and the European.