Historical Studies in Religion

The Committee on Historical Studies in Religion concentrates on the development of Western religious traditions, primarily Judaism and Christianity, from their origins to the present, including the Bible, History of Judaism and History of Christianity areas.


Simeon Chavel, Alireza DoostdarCurtis J. Evans, Michael FishbaneHans-Josef Klauck, Karin Krause,  David Martinez, Paul Mendes-Flohr, Margaret M. Mitchell, Willemien Otten, Lucy K. Pick, James T. Robinson, Susan E. Schreiner, Michael Sells, Jeffrey Stackert

Topics that span the Committee include the formation and interpretation of the Jewish and Christian scriptures, and the social, cultural, and intellectual history of Judaism and Christianity from antiquity to the present, as independent traditions and in their interactions with each other and other world religions, including Islam, in various geographical regions.

The Committee on Historical Studies in Religion supplements the written PhD examinations offered in its areas with one Committee-wide examination: Scripture in History, Literature, Thought, and Culture. Subject to the requirements of his or her area of concentration, a PhD student in the Divinity School may stipulate the Committee-wide examination as one of his or her four written examinations.

Read more about the Areas:

These pages contain more in-depth information about the specific areas, including sample courses and exams.

Brief overviews are also available (below).

Bible: brief overview

Bible brief overview (link to PDF)

History of Christianity: brief overview

History of Christianity brief overview (link to PDF)

History of Judaism: brief overview

History of Judaism brief overview (link to PDF)