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Imagining the Inquisition

Welcome to Imagining the Inquisition. Based on a theology master seminar of the same name, this project connects the past to the present through the lens of film. Read along as we distinguish fantasy from reality and truth from lies. Learn about inquisitors, heretics, and how modern movies portray them. Discover the nebulous nature of history and how modern-day media (mis)represent it.

What is the inquisition? What is religious dissent? Do the movies really get it right? Find the answers to these questions and more on this website. Separate fact from fiction by Imagining the Inquisition.

In the spring of 2018, a close-knit class undertook a journey into the past. They learned about the first moments of inquisitorial activity and how those actions later transformed into the witch trials of the early modern period. Under the guidance of Professor Daniela Müller, they examined the representation of this historical inquisition in a variety of films. The ensuing work gave rise to the project Imagining the Inquisition. This project is a Radboud University valorisation project. Read more about the history of the project, those involved, and find contact information.

The Inquisition in Film

Witchcraft hysteria, the perennially unexpected Spanish Inquisition, persecuted scientists and Dostoevsky retellings: The Inquisition in Film has it all. It aims to analyse the movies of today and to determine how they utilise history. Some movies (re-)invent history for their own convenience, while others present faithful representations of the past. Which films hold (mostly) true to history and which play on the myths surrounding inquisition?

The Inquisition in History

Murder, torture, and cruelty. What else could describe "the Inquisition"? How about lies, fiction, and propaganda? It may be surprising to learn that there is no singular, permanent "Inquisition" in history. Learn about the different inquisitions Artist's Impression of Inquisition Trial Against Catharthroughout history, and what they have in common. Confront your own preconceptions about inquisition and bust the myths. And what about the so-called "Black Legend"? Does it really reflect what happened in the Spanish Inquisition, or is it merely propaganda? Read through the articles provided in the Inquisition in History section and find all the answers to these questions, and more!