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About the Project

Imagining the Inquisition aims to demonstrate the difficulties of mixing past and present through its examination of the manifold ways 'inquisition' has been represented in film. Follow along as the 2018 theology master seminar History of Church and Theology, led by project lead Professor Daniela Müller, presents its research.

On this page you will find more information about the history of the project as well as about those involved with its realisation. Do you have a comment, question, or do you wish to participate in this ongoing project? Feel free to contact us.

Study Theology at Radboud University!

Did you enjoy learning about faith, dissidents and film? Check out our History of Church and Theology courses. Radboud University offers these courses at both the bachelor’s and master’s level, meaning no matter where you are, there is a place for you in Nijmegen.

The Project

Imagining the Inquisition began in 2018 as a master seminar, which included an excursion to the south of France, the original home of the medieval inquisition, as well as the decor for several inquisition films. In this course, taught by Professor Daniela Müller, the students examined inquisitions, witch trials, heresy, and their media portrayals. Professor Müller imparted something valuable during the lectures, namely that history does not simply stay in the past but rather impacts and informs the present. Films, by their very nature, resurrect and revitalize the past, bringing it into modern-day life. The fusion of history and film is representative of theology at Radboud University: living, modern, and relevant.

With this project, Professor Müller seized the chance to demonstrate just how studying theology means studying a living, breathing tradition. The students, joined by one of Professor Müller's PhD-students, whose research interests center on perception and myth, worked tirelessly to produce papers and articles for the project. In doing so, they too played a part in connecting theology to the lives of the greater public.

After months of hard work, Imagining the Inquisition is ready for the public. It is a fusion of Professor Müller's vision, the students' hard work, and Radboud University's public-mindedness. With it, the past comes alive. Explore the interplay between today and history. Learn the value of critical film viewership. Question what the movies show us and unravel historical fact from (black) legend.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank Radboud University's valorisation efforts. The university is determined to tear down the barriers between academy and polis, and this project is a direct result of that desire. Without their help, this project would have never been anything more than a dream. For their efforts in realising this disbursal of research, we are very grateful.

The People

Prof. Daniela Müller, the head of this project, is the chair of Church History and Canon Law as well as the chair of History of Christianity. She researches ecclesial power, religious dissidents, and how these coalesce into the medieval inquisition against the Cathars. She is fascinated by the tension between orthodoxy and heterodoxy (or what some may call 'heresy'). Imagining the Inquisition is a natural extension of her curiosity and research focus.

Matthew Tracy is an American master student in the Systematic Theology programme. He is the primary author of two of the background articles and primary editor for the project. He hopes to attain his teaching license upon completion of his degree.

Pauline Donders is a student in the master Religious Studies. She holds a master's degree in English Literature and has worked for the chair of History of Christianity since 2013. She is responsible for the final editing as well as for creating and maintaining this website.

Contact Us

We intend for Imagining the Inquisition to be an ever-evolving project. Are you interested in participating in the project and perhaps have your own research featured on this website? Feel free to contact us to discuss how you, too, can be a part of Radboud University's valorisation project. Of course, you can also write to us with any comments and questions you might have!


The images on this website are all in the public domain unless mentioned otherwise. For the copyright associated with the films featured in this project, see the relevant pages. Do you have a question about the use of (one of) the images? Please do not hesitate to contact us.