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Eastern Christianity: History, Culture, Society

Betrokken opleiding: Instituut voor Oosters Christendom / FFTR
Minorcoördinator: Prof. dr. Heleen Murre - van den Berg
Toegankelijk voor: Students FFTR and FdL
Ingangseisen: First year completed
Periode: hele jaar


Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Christianity is known mostly superficially as the religion of Christians in Eastern Europe, Russia and the Middle East, but it comes in many different forms that are often not well understood in the west. Eastern Orthodoxy is:

  • the sometimes aggressive majority religion of Russia;
  • the almost vanished religion of the Christians of the Middle East;
  • the religion of recent migrants from Eritrea;
  • the religion of well-established Armenian, Coptic and Syriac migrants from the Middle East;
  • a religion part of national struggles in Ukraine;
  • the national religion of Greece or Rumania.

Eastern Orthodoxy has common roots in a tradition that developed independently outside Roman influence, while at the same time mutual influences between eastern and western churches characterize most of its history.

The three courses that make up this minor program aim to acquaint you with the rich history and contemporary situation of this part of Christianity. We will focus on how in the contemporary world, Eastern Christianity, as a majority or a minority religion (vis-à-vis other types of Christianity or vis-à-vis Islam or Judaism), takes it places in both eastern and western societies.

Periode Cursus Cursuscode Studielast (aantal EC)
1 and 2 A History of Eastern Christianity FTR-OTR760 5
3 and 4 Majorities and Minorities: Church and State in Eastern Christianity FTR-OTR761 5
3 and 4 Coptic Christianity: an introduction FTR-OTR736 5