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010089 BA Auschwitz - a commanding word. Elie Wiesel - Johann Baptist Metz - Friedrich Wilhelm Marquardt (2013W)

4.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 1 - Katholische Theologie
Continuous assessment of course work

Emil L. Fackenheim wrote in his book "To Mend the World" that it "is unthinkable that the gulf between Jews and Gentiles, created and legislated since 1933, should be unbridgeable so that the few but heroic, saintly attempts to bridge it from the Gentile side ... should come to naught. It is this unthinkability that caused my own mind, on first confronting it, the perception of a '614th commandment,' or a 'commanding voice of Auschwitz,' forbidding the post-Holocaust Jew to give Hitler post-humous victory."

The seminar will deal with three remarkable bridgebuilders. Each of them was born in 1928, 85 years ago, and each of them stood at a different side of the gulf.

Elie Wiesel (born 28th of Sept., 1928) was deported to Auschwitz and survived. Ever since the late 1950s he was in quest of what had happened to his people and why it had happened. His remembrance of the Shoa made him be an almost prophetic admonisher to fight every kind of Anti-Semitism and hatred between men in order to prevent future genocides and mass murder.

Johann Baptist Metz (born 5th of Aug., 1928), a Catholic theologian, realized that Auschwitz was not just a political catastrophe, but a Christian disaster. His conclusion was and is that Christian theology must always be developed face to face with Auschwitz. This is the very heart of Metz' Political Theology.

Friedrich Wilhelm Marquardt (2nd of Dec., 1928-25th of May, 2002) belonged to the Evangelic Church, dealt with Biblical and Rabbinic Judaism, and was the author of a dogmatic theology facing the situation after Auschwitz as a situation, "in which we dare to speak of God only with the reservation of God; the presupposition of everything in connection with God ... must be: 'as God wills and He lives.'"


Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).


Language: German


Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Monday 07.10. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 14.10. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 21.10. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 28.10. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 04.11. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 11.11. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 18.11. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 25.11. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 02.12. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 09.12. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 16.12. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 13.01. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 20.01. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG
Monday 27.01. 14:00 - 15:30 Seminarraum 2 (Kath) Schenkenstraße EG


Aims, contents and method of the course

- Elie Wiesel's way through the Shoa to his first testimonies of the Shoa; the Nobel Peace laureate in 1986, his religious attitude and messages and his quests on God and men.
- Johann Baptist's reflection on Political Theology as a theological way of effective remembrance, the primate of narration, and the memoria passionis.
- Wilhelm Friedrich Marquardt's theology of Israel, Israel as "formal Christology", and Auschwitz as an impact on Christian thinking and living.
- Emil Fackenheim's "Foundations of Post-Holocaust Jewish Thoughts" and its 614 th commandment as a claim on Christian Theology beyond anti-Judaic and anti-Semitic attitudes.

Assessment and permitted materials

Presentation, seminar paper or bachelor thesis

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

The students should know
- the main immediate connections between the Christian ways of thinking and their effects an building and keeping anti-Judaic and anti-Semitic attitudes.
- that the Shoa was not a cultural accident but the consequence of a hatred fueled by Christian theologies and preaching.
- the reasons and the main elements of the Political Theology of Johann Baptist Metz in respect of developing fundamental Christian theology face to face with Judaism and the Shoa.
- the foundation and the Jewish core of Friedrich-Wilhelm Marquardt's Christology and his reasons of his dealing with Rabbinic thinking.

Examination topics

Presentation, discussions, working in the group, cooperation

Reading list

Emil L. Fackenheim, To Mend the World. Foundations of Post-Holocaust Jewish Thinking, Bloomington-Indianapolis 1984.
Elie Wiesel, Alle Flüsse fließen ins Meer. Autobiographie, München 1997.
Elie Wiesel, ... und das Meer wird nicht voll. Autobiographie 1969-1996, München 1999.
Elie Wiesel, Gesang der Toten. Erinnerung und Zeugnis. Mit den Nobelpreisreden von Oslo. 2. Aufl., Freiburg-Basel-Wien 1989.
Diane Dakers, Elie Wiesel. Holocaust Survivor and Messenger for Humanity, St. Catharines 2012.
Johann Baptist Metz, Glaube in Geschichte und Gesellschaft. Studien zu einer praktischen Fundamentaltheologie, Mainz 1977.
Johann Baptist Metz, Mystik der offenen Augen. Wenn Spiritualität aufbricht, Freiburg-Basel-Wien 2011.
Friedrich-Wilhelm Marquardt, Von Elend und Heimsuchung der Theologie. Prolegomena zur Dogmatik, München 1992.
Friedrich-Wilhelm Marquardt, Das christliche Bekenntnis zu Jesus, dem Juden. Eine Christologie. 2 Bände, München 1990-1991.
Andreas Pangritz, Was geht uns Christen der Talmud an? Die Eltern-Kind-Beziehung im Talmud. F.-W. Marquartds Talmud-Lektüre zum Traktat Kidduschin, in: Freiburger Rundbrief N. F. 16 (2009) 193-202.

Association in the course directory

für 011 (08W, 11W) D31, 033 193 (08W, 11W) BAM, Fächerkontingentseminar 2 oder (freies) Wahlfach für 011(02W), 012 (02W) und 020

Last modified: Mo 07.09.2020 15:27