The reception of the New Testament in literature and art

Course Information
TitleΗ ΠΡΟΣΛΗΨΗ ΤΗΣ ΚΑΙΝΗΣ ΔΙΑΘΗΚΗΣ ΣΤΗ ΛΟΓΟΤΕΧΝΙΑ ΚΑΙ ΣΤΗΝ ΤΕΧΝΗ. / The reception of the New Testament in literature and art
SchoolSocial Theology and Christian Culture
Cycle / Level2nd / Postgraduate
Teaching PeriodWinter/Spring
CoordinatorAikaterini Tsalampouni
Course ID60005034

Class Information
Academic Year2017 – 2018
Class PeriodWinter
Faculty Instructors
Weekly Hours3
Total Hours39
Class ID
Course Type 2016-2020
  • Scientific Area
Course Type 2011-2015
Specific Foundation / Core
Mode of Delivery
  • Face to face
Digital Course Content
The course is also offered to exchange programme students.
Language of Instruction
  • Greek (Instruction, Examination)
  • English (Instruction, Examination)
General Prerequisites
Degree of theology or other university school
Learning Outcomes
After the successful completion of the course the students: (a) will have acquired a critical and in depth knowledge of the reception theory and the they will be able to describe coherently and clearly methodological issues, to discern problems and to suggest solutions (b) will be able to trace analogies, interpretative techniques, and reception mechanisms of the biblical text in various forms of human artistic creation (c) will be able to discern in the New Testament text theological themers that are mainly related to Christology and to explain how they are embedded into the their original narrative context and how they are further employed in new narrative frameworks (d) will be able to use their previous knowledge in matters of New Testament interpretation and theology in order to understand and evaluate various works of human artistic creation (e) will be able to work interdisciplinary and use tools from various disciplines in order to suggest new readings of the biblical text
General Competences
  • Apply knowledge in practice
  • Retrieve, analyse and synthesise data and information, with the use of necessary technologies
  • Adapt to new situations
  • Work autonomously
  • Work in teams
  • Work in an interdisciplinary team
  • Generate new research ideas
  • Appreciate diversity and multiculturality
  • Advance free, creative and causative thinking
Course Content (Syllabus)
The topic of the course is the way the biblical texts -and in our case those of the New Testament- were received and interpreted within new aesthetic frameworks in history. Since the range of the topic is very wide the focus will be on: (1) the presentation of the major landmarks in the modern theory of reception Ι (forerunners: Russian formalism, H.-J. Gadamer), (2) the presentation of the major landmarks in the modern theory of reception ΙI (Jauss, Iser), (3)the theory and modern approaches (Stanley Fish, Roland Barhes, Jacques Derrida, Hayden White),(4) the description of the major principles of the theory (5) the application of the theory in the New Testament interpretation I (types of reception, theoretical framework), (6) the application of the theory in the New Testament interpretation II (problems and boundaries) (7) reception and historical criticism, (8) the reception of Jesus in the film I, (9)the reception of Jesus in the film II, (10) the reception of Jesus and New Testament passages in literature (Greek and foreign), (11) the reception of the New Testament in art (12) the reception of New Testament in popular culture and politics, and (13) results, evaluation of the method
New Testament, reception history, interpretation, cinema, arts, literature
Educational Material Types
  • Notes
  • Slide presentations
  • Video lectures
  • Multimedia
  • Book
Use of Information and Communication Technologies
Use of ICT
  • Use of ICT in Course Teaching
  • Use of ICT in Communication with Students
Use of audio-visual tools in the process of teaching (especially powerpoint and video clips) Supplementary material, additional data and exercises / tests on Blackboard Communication and research counseling through e-mails and skype
Course Organization
Reading Assigment55
Field trips and participation in conferences / seminars / activities30
Written assigments70
Study of films and of works of art56
Student Assessment
- Oral presentation and critical discussion of two contemporary artistic works that relate to the image of Jesus (40% of the final grade). The presentation must conform to the rules of an oral presentation as these are described in the document uploaded on the web page of the course on moodle - Written assignment on a topic related to the course. The topics will be announced on the e-learning platform. The written assignment must conform to the rules of a written essay as they are described in the document that will be uploaded on the web page on moodle(60% of the final grade).
Student Assessment methods
  • Written Exam with Extended Answer Questions (Formative, Summative)
  • Written Assignment (Summative)
  • Oral Exams (Formative, Summative)
  • Performance / Staging (Formative)
Additional bibliography for study
• Robert C. Holub, Θεωρία της πρόσληψης: μία κριτική εισαγωγή, Μεταίχμιο, Αθήνα 2004 • J.G. Crossley, Reading the New Testament: Contemporary Approaches, Routledge, London and New York 2010 • J.G. Crossley, “An Immodest Proposal for Biblical Studies”, Relegere 2:1 (2012): 153-177 • L.W. Hurtado, “On Diversity, Competence, and Coherence in New Testament Studies: A Modest Response to Crossley’s ‘Immodest Proposal’”, Relegere 2:2 (2012): 353-364 • R. Warning (επιμ.), Rezeptionsästhetik: Theorie und Praxis (UTB 303), Wilhelm Fink, München 1979 • H.R. Jauss, Η θεωρία της πρόσληψης. Τρία μελετήματα, Εστία, Αθήνα 1995 • W. Iser, Der implizierte Leser (UTB 163), W. Fink, München 31994 = W. Iser, The Implied Reader: Patterns of Communication in Prose Fiction from Bunyan to Beckett, John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore & London 1974 • W. Iser, Der Akt des Lesens, W. Fink, München 1976 = W. Iser, The Act of Reading: A Theory of Aesthetic Response, John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore & London 1978 • David Sheppard (επιμ.), Images of the Word: Hollywood’s Bible and Beyond (SBL. Semeia Studies 54), Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta 2008 • P.C. Burns, Jesus in Twentieth Century Literature, Art, and Movies (UBC Studies in Religion 1), Continuum, New York & London 2007 • J.L. Staley / R. Walsh (επιμ.), Jesus, the Gospels and Cinematic Imagination: A handbook to Jesus on DVD, Westminster John Knox Press, Lousiville / London 2007 • R. Walsh, Reading the Gospels in the Dark: Portrayals of Jesus in Film, Continuum, London / New York 2003 • M. DiPaolo, Godly Heretics. Essays on Alternative Christianity in Literature and Popular Culture, McFarland & Company, Jefferson et al. 2013 • W.G. Wells, Competing Cinematic Christs: A Critical Matrix for Evaluating Twenty- First Century Jesus-Story Films, Dissertation, Faculty of the University of Texas 2011 • Ph. Culbertson / E.M. Wainright (επιμ.), The Bible in / and Popular Culture: A Creative Encounter (SBL.Semeia Studies 65), SBL, Atlanta 2010 • P. Grace, The Religious Film: Christianity and the Hagiopic, Willey-Blackwell, Oxford 2009 • F.L. Bakker, The Challenge of the Silver Screen: An Analysis of the Cinematic Portraits of Jesus, Rama, Buddha, and Muhammad (Studies in Religion and the Arts 1), Leiden / Boston, Brill 2009 • L. Baugh, Imaging the Divine. Jesus and Christ-Figures in Film, Sheed & Ward, Kansas City 1997 • V.H.T. Nguyen, “The Quest for the Cinematic Jesus: Scholarly Exploration in Jesus Films”, CBR 8 (2010): 183-206
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