PSCO Presentation: 19 February, 2015

“Reflections on Adolf von Harnack (1851–1930)”

Robert A. Kraft (Penn) and
Christian Wiese (Frankfurt am Main, Goethe University; Katz Center)


Bob Kraft is Berg Professor of Religious Studies, Emeritus, at the University of Pennsylvania and a founding member of PSCO! His most recent book is Exploring the Scripturesque: Jewish Texts and Their Christian Contexts (Leiden: Brill, 2009).

Christian Wiese is Martin Buber Professor in Jewish Thought and Philosophy at Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main, in Germany. His publications include Challenging Colonial Discourse: Jewish Studies and Protestant Theology in Wilhelmine Germany (2005) and The Life and Thought of Hans Jonas: Jewish Dimensions (2007). He is the editor or coeditor of several volumes, including Redefining Judaism in an Age of Emancipation: Comparative Perspectives on Samuel Holdheim (1806–1860) (2007); Modern Judaism and Historical Consciousness: Identities – Encounters – Perspectives (with Andreas Gotzmann, 2007); and Wissenschaft des Judentums in Europe: Comparative Perspectives (with Mirjam Thulin, forthcoming 2014).


Their talk is the fourth in our series for the 52nd PSCO, exploring “Formative Figures and Paths Not Taken: The Study of Ancient Judaism and Christianity between History and Historiography.”

Note that Christian Wiese's PSCO remarks will focus on "Jewish Responses to Adolf von Harnack’s What is Christianity? and the Controversies about the 'Essence of Judaism' in Germany before World War I.” The full text of the work is available online in English and German, and scans of the specific selections have been uploaded to our PSCO Facebook group page (see “Files” tab), together with materials from Bob Kraft.

Audio Recording

Here is an audio recording of this session.

Meeting and Dining

All are welcome! As usual, those interested are also welcome to join us for an informal dinner prior to the session. Those wishing to dine together before the seminar will meet at 6:00 p.m. in the Second-Floor Lounge of Cohen Hall and then walk next door to the food court in Houston Hall. Or, just meet us in the Houston Hall downstairs food-court between 6:00-6:45 p.m.

As usual, the PSCO seminar will begin at 7:00 p.m. and end at 9:00 p.m. We meet in the Second-Floor Lounge of Cohen Hall.