The Eastern Roman Empire, known today as the Byzantine Empire, survived until 1453, having spread Christianity among the Slavs in the Balkans and Eastern Europe. Among the topics of Byzantine history surveyed here are the seven Ecumenical Councils and their theological and political implications, iconoclasm and Byzantine art, Byzantine relations with the West (especially during the Crusades) as well as with the Slavs â€” culminating in various attempts to bring them into both the orbit of Greek Christianity and the Empire. This leads to the study of the Christianization of Kievan Rusâ€™.
For the Slavic Churches, the course provides and overview of: Kievan Rusâ€™ Christianity (988-1240) and its decline; the Unions of Florence (1439â€“1442) and Brest (1596) and their aftermath; the rise of the Church of Moscow, under Patriarch and Synod; the Church in Orthodox Russia and Catholic Austria; and Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches under totalitarian and post-totalitarian rule, especially in Ukraine.
Simultaneously with these Slavic developments, the course will look at the East-West Schism, attempts to heal it, and the struggles and eventual collapse of the Byzantine Empire. The rise of hesychasm and monasticism in both Greek and Slavic Churches will also be examined, delving into theological and political aspects.
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Hours per Week: