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Joke Spaans – Theology, Religious Studies and Church History

The recent Report of the KNAW-research committee describes the extreme fragmentation of the field of Theology and Religious Studies in the Netherlands. This has negative consequences for the visibility and viability of research. This article focuses on Church History and the various ways it has been conceptualised in various environments. It argues that Church History has been slow to follow the expansion in approaches and subjects of study that has taken place in the historical profession. Although the political climate is not very promising, the only way to go would be a serious effort in catching up, closer cooperation with general historians and between the various branches of Theology and Religious Studies and with the ‘heritage industry’.

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