Wednesday, 11 January 2012

(Non-residential) Course on 'History in texts and iconography: Early Christian Life and Thought from Clement of Rome to Cyprian' at the INSTITUTUM PATRISTICUM AUGUSTINIANUM and The British School at Rome

You are invited to join Professor Allen Brent who delivers this course in English, this spring 2012 (from 13.2.-19.5.2012, with an Easter recess from 31.3.-15.4.):

1st  sett. Church, State and Roman society from Nero to Constantine: an overview.
2nd sett. Clement of Rome and imperial order.
3rd sett. Ignatius of Antioch and the origin of single bishops.
4th sett. Ignatius, Asia Minor, and imperial order viewed by the Second Sophistic.
5th sett. Justin Martyr and the theology of the Logos.
6th sett. Justin’s Apology and the Logos in Pagan political theology.
7th sett. The Hippolytan community and the Statue of ‘St Hippolytus’ in the Vatican Library.
8th sett. Monarchian disputes on the Trinity and developments towards a pagan monotheism legitimating imperial political order.
9th sett. The emergence of a monarch bishop at Rome: Callistus, the Papal Mausoleum and the Via Apia Antica.
10th sett. From Maximin to Decius Trajan: Ss Petrus et Paulus ad catacombas and popular Christianity.
11th sett. Cyprian of Carthage and Roman jurisprudence.
12th sett. Cyprian’s response to the imperial ideology: popular culture, Pagan and Christian.
13th sett. Aurelian, Constantine, and Sol Invictus.

Visits: In addition, site visits are planned:
1.      Ara Pacis Augustae and the Prima Porta statue, Via di Ripetta and Vatican museum (after week 2)
2.      The statue of ‘St Hippolytus’ in the Vatican Library and the Museo Pio Cristiano (after week 6).
3.      S. Callisto and S. Sebastiano, Via Apia Antica (afer week 9)
4.      Vatican mausolea and the shrine of St. Peter (after week 12)

Beginning with Clement of Rome, the character of the pagan imperial background is explored as a backcloth the author’s reflection on the unity of nature and of society. A contrast is provided by Ignatius of Antioch’s alternative Hellenistic perspective, and his background in the Greek city-states of Asia minor in the Second Sophistic, whose polity and iconography he reflects. The political implications of Justin’s Logos apologetic are explored in terms of a developing imperial ideology. The discussion of the Hippolytan community is based upon the text of the Refutation of All Heresies, and the Statue and its iconography, with a comparison between Callistus’ theological monarchianism and the quest for a pagan monotheism represented by Severan ideology. Cyprian’s developing thesis on Church Order is identified as the counterpart to imperial order, and his eschatological claims as the counterpart to imperial, Stoic eschatology represented in the coinage of Decius Trajan and his rivals. The course concludes with the setting of the scene for Aurelian and Constantine’s quest for a universal monotheism, whether Pagan or Christian, and its textual and iconographic indications.

(costs for the entire course EUR 150,-)

Further information at:

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