Section for Church History – University of Copenhagen

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Section for Church History

 An academic discipline, within the field of theological studies, the History of Church and Dogma, explores, analyses and describes, from a contemporary perspective, the history of the Christian church - from the earliest congregations to the wide diversity of churches and denominations of today.

Christianity has exercised a crucial influence on the whole of the Western world's culture and history, and has also played a part in shaping the recent history of Asia, Africa and Latin America. However, Christianity has always co-existed, in a reciprocal relationship, with the society that surrounds it and has itself been influenced and changed throughout history.

As church historians, we explore these historical processes and seek to explain not only how the church and Christianity have influenced society, but also how society has brought about crucial changes in the formulation and understanding of the Christian message, as well as in the institutional development of the church.

As a result, church history cannot be treated in a satisfactory manner in isolation from general political, cultural, social and economic history. As a result, the History of Church and Dogma does not differentiate itself from other historical sciences, in which topical problems are illuminated through the introduction of many types of sources, e.g. texts, architecture, art, music, etc.

Staff at the Section for Church History are involved in a number of research projects that encompass a wide range of areas within the field of church history. The Section also does a great deal of work on teaching and research, as well as on the dissemination of research results to the  wider public, e.g. through lectures and popular-science publications.