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History 3229

History of Early Christianity


Credit hours: 3
GEC categories: history, global
Prerequisites: 2000 level history course

Text Books:

Title Author(s) Publisher ISBN
After the New Testament: A Reader in Early Christianity Bart D. Ehrman Oxford U.P.
The Early Church (vol. 1) Henry Chadwick Pelican Book
Christianity and Paganism 350-750 J.N. Hillgarth U. of Pennsylvania Press

Example Syllabus:

Course Objectives: History courses develop students’ knowledge of how past events influence today’s society and help them understand how human beings view themselves. (1) Students acquire a perspective on history and an understanding of the factors that shape human activity. (2) Students display knowledge about the origins and nature of contemporary issues and develop a foundation for future comparative understanding. (3) Students think, speak, and write critically about primary and secondary historical sources by examining diverse interpretations of past events and ideas in their historical contexts. (4) Students exhibit an understanding of political, economic, cultural, physical, and social differences among the nations of the world, including a specific examination of non-Western culture.

Course Content: This course introduces students to the origins and early history of Christianity. It aims to provide students with a historical perspective on how men and women living during the first seven centuries of the Common Era perceived and/or practiced what was a new and increasingly prominent ancient religion. We shall focus primarily on the social, political, and intellectual dimensions of ancient and late antique Christianity, with special attention paid to the great diversity of belief and practice among individuals who considered themselves followers of Christ.

Method of Presentation: Mixture of lecture and discussion (small group and full class).

Method of Evaluation: midterm -- 20% 2 papers (5-7 pgs.) -- 15% ea. (30% total) class participation -- 30% final exam -- 20%


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