Martin Luther's protests against the Catholic Church changed the political, spiritual and cultural maps of Europe in the early sixteenth century. Lyndal Roper's recent biography of the founder of Protestantism cited him within the context of his times - and built an ambivalent picture of a difficult figure. In this lecture, Professor Roper will uncover the roots and branches of perhaps the ugliest element of Luther's thought: his virulent anti-Semitism, which would centuries hence be co-opted by the Nazis, and how it led Luther to call for the cultural eradication of German Jewry. In particular she will examine the origins and nature of Luther's anti-Semitism, assessing how one community of ‘chosen people’ went about othering another.
We're excited and fortunate to have Professor Lyndal Roper speak here at Liverpool on a topic with such historical urgency and contemporary relevance. She is Regius Professor of Modern History at the University of Oxford, and a fellow of Oriel College. A specialist in the European Reformations, she has pioneered the use of psychoanalytical and anthropological techniques in the field, and her work will be of interest to a very wide range of scholars working on areas such as the histories of spirituality, the body, violence and gender. Her books include Oedipus and the Devil (1994), Witch Craze: Terror and Fantasy in Baroque Germany (2004) and, edited with Daniel Pick, Dreams and History: The Interpretation of Dreams from Ancient Greece to Modern Psychoanalysis (2004). Her biography of Luther was published last year to great and wide acclaim.
This event is part of the Liverpool Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies Seminar Series.
A wine reception will follow the event from 6.30pm - 7.30pm.