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COURSE TITLE: Global Christianity since 1500
NAME OF INSTRUCTOR: Dr. William Van Arragon
CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION: credits 3(hrs lect 3 - hrs sem 0 - hrs lab 0)
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will explore the global growth of Christianity since 1500, a process that raises pressing historical and theological questions. Why did Christianity "succeed" in some times and places, but not in others? How has Christianization been implicated in processes of Western imperialism and conquest? And what cross-cultural processes or transferences occur when Christianity infuses a new culture? We will examine these questions in depth by examining the global spread of Christianity to the Americas, Asia and Africa after 1500.

Same as HIST 324.

Prerequisites: HIST 204
  • Allen Heaton Anderson, To the Ends of the Earth: Pentecostalism and the Transformation of World Christianity (2013)
  • Lamin Sanneh, Disciples of All Nations: Pillars of World Christianity (2008)
  • Shusako Endo, Silence (1966)
Response to Silence 20%
Comparative Review of Sanneh and Anderson (1500-2000 words) 25%
Course Project 25%
Attendance and Participation 5%
Final Exam (take-home) 25%
  • January 4—First day of class.
  • January 9-16—Topic: Approaching Global Christianity.
  • January 11—Discussion of Walls, “The Ephesian Moment” and “Culture and Conversion” (on Moodle)
  • January 16—Discussion of Bediako, “The Emergence of World Christianity” (on Moodle)
  • January 18-February 6—Topic: Missions and Missionaries.
  • January 25—I.S. Conference (no class).
  • February 6—Discussion of Endo, Silence.  [Response essay due in class.]
  • February 8-27—Topic: Christianity in the Americas.
  • February 19-23—Reading Week (no classes).
  • March 1-20—Topic: Christianity in Africa.
  • March 15—Discussion of Sanneh and Anderson.  [Review essay due in class.]
  • March 22-April 17—Topic: Christianity in Asia.
  • April 17—Last Class.  Final Projects due in class.

Required texts, assignments, and grade distributions may vary from one offering of this course to the next. Please consult the course instructor for up to date details.

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