The Kingdom of God in America
The course explores the influence of theological ideas on social movements in America and such questions as: How do our ideas about God shape the way we engage the social order? What role do nineteenth century European and American Protestant theologies play in informing the American search for “beloved community”, which was the term Martin Luther King Jr. sometimes used interchangeably with the Kingdom of God? What are the social consequences of theological commitments?
Although its main historical focus is the American Civil Rights Movement from 1954-1968, the course will also revel in counter-cultural movements of the late 1960’s, and attend to the faith-based community-development movement and recent community organizing initiatives, asking about their origins and limitations.
Listed as RELC 2850 with course number 20486, lectures take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2:00 – 3:15pm with a separate discussion section on Fridays. All interested undergraduate U.Va. students are invited to enroll.
Read the course syllabus here.
Charles Marsh is the Commonwealth Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia and the director of the Project on Lived Theology. His research interests include modern Christian thought, religion and civil rights, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and lived theology. His publications include Strange Glory: A Life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer (2014) and God’s Long Summer: Stories of Faith and Civil Rights (1997), which won the 1998 Grawemeyer Award in Religion.