Academic journal article Church History

Church History

Academic journal article Church History

Church History

Article excerpt

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Book Reviews and Notes

This volume seeks to present martyrdom in terms comprehensible to a world where the word conjures up images of fanaticism and murder. In order to do so, the contributors have first presented papers discussing the phenomenon of early Christian martyrdom. Among these, Stephen Fowl's close reading of Pauline witness through bodily suffering in Philippians is excellent, and Ann Astwell's discussion of the trial of Joan of Arc is well done, but the collection really gets going with two essays on early modern Europe. Brad S. Gregory brilliantly differentiates between prosecution of heresy and martyrdom during the Reformation, while William T. Cavanaugh explodes traditional narratives of the Wars of Religion, arguing that, far from preventing religious violence, the rising states of Europe transferred its purview from church-oriented societies to apparently secular governments. These sophisticated essays set up Michael Budde's probing exploration of how twentieth-century Christians could conspicuously set nationalistic agendas ahead of faith commitments. …

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