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CHTH335 Special Topic: Christian Theology and Science (Advanced)

An exploration of the relationship between Christian theology and Science, including investigation of historical debates and issues of current concern.

The relationship between Christian theology and science has for the most part been a rich and constructive one, occasional tensions notwithstanding. This paper will explore the history of the relationship between these two spheres of human inquiry and investigate the current prospects for fruitful interaction between theology and science.

Paper title Special Topic: Christian Theology and Science (Advanced)
Paper code CHTH335
Subject Christian Thought and History
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period(s) 1st Non standard period (9 November 2020 - 12 December 2020), 1st Non standard period (9 November 2020 - 12 December 2020)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $904.05
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $3,954.75

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Prerequisite
36 200-level points
Schedule C
Arts and Music, Theology
Notes
May not be credited together with CHTH 335 passed in 2018.
Contact

Email: theology@otago.ac.nz
Phone: 03 479 8639

Teaching staff

Course coordinator: Professor David Tombs
Dr Nicola Hoggard-Creegan

Paper Structure
Topics covered will include:
  • Models of Interaction between Theology and Science
  • Creation
  • Copernicus and Galileo
  • Darwin
  • Interactions with Evolutionary Science
  • Science and the Human Person
  • The Problem of Evil
  • Ethical Issues, such as New Technologies and Ecology and Other Animals
Teaching Arrangements
The paper will be taught over five weeks by means of one 3-hour and one 2-hour class each week.

Distance students will participate synchronously through the Zoom videoconference facility. Although participation in the live videoconferences is expected, lectures will be recorded and available for later viewing should students miss a class.

Note that you will be required to join in most of the Zoom sessions live if studying by distance. Please refer to the on-campus timetable at the bottom of this page for times.
Textbooks

Essential:

Tom McLeish, Faith and Wisdom in Science, Oxford University Press, 2014

Highly Recommended:

J.B. Stump & A.G. Padgell, (eds): The Blackwell Companion to Science and Christianity, Blackwell 2012

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Students who complete the paper at 200-level will:
  1. Show familiarity with different models of and approaches to the science/theology interface;
  2. Be able to identify some of the cultural aspects of our knowing and research;
  3. Understand some of the historical threads of engagement between faith institutions and science;
  4. Give an informed and critical account of selected ethical issues at the boundary of faith and science, especially as they relate to the status of other animals and ecology; and
  5. Show the relevance of sources in popular culture for exploring major themes in the engagement between theology and science.

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Timetable

1st Non standard period (9 November 2020 - 12 December 2020)

Location
Dunedin
Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system
Blackboard

Lecture

Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend
A1 Monday 10:00-11:50 46-50
Wednesday 09:00-11:50 46-50

1st Non standard period (9 November 2020 - 12 December 2020)

Location
Dunedin
Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system
Blackboard

Lecture

Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend
A1 Monday 10:00-11:50 46-50
Wednesday 09:00-11:50 46-50

This paper explores what the Christian theological tradition offers to economic questions and reflects on its relevance for the future evolution of global capitalism.

This paper will critically explore how a theological perspective can shed new light on issues relating to markets, capitalism, consumerism, wealth, poverty, inequality and growth.  Drawing upon a wide range of resources, including the Judaeo-Christian Scriptures, historical and contemporary writings of theologians, church reports and Catholic social teaching, the paper will explore important moral and ethical considerations concerning the influence and operation of markets and in particular, the functioning of these markets within the prevailing global capitalistic paradigm.  

Paper title Special Topic: Theology, Money and Markets (Advanced)
Paper code CHTH335
Subject Christian Thought and History
EFTS 0.15
Points 18 points
Teaching period(s) First Semester, First Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for 2021 have not yet been set
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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Prerequisite
18 200-level points
Restriction
CHTH 334, CHTX 334
Schedule C
Arts and Music, Theology
Notes
May not be credited together with CHTH 235 taken in 2021
Contact

Email: theology@otago.ac.nz
Phone: 03 479 8639

Teaching staff

Course Co-ordinator and Lecturer: Dr Andrew Shepherd

Paper Structure

Topics covered will include:

Module1 – Historical Reflections

  • Session 1: Theology and Economics – an introduction
  • Session 2: The Bible and Economics – Torah and the Prophets
  • Session 3: The Bible and Economics – Jesus and the Gospels; The Early Church and the New Testament 
  • Session 4: Historical Theology – Early Church Fathers, Medieval Period and the Reformation
  • Sessions 5: Historical Theology – The Rise of Capitalism and the ‘Acquisitive Society’ 

Module 2 – Contemporary Challenges

  • Session 6: ‘The Total Economy’: Global Capitalism and its (Dis)contents
  • Session 7: ‘A Pound of Flesh’: Credit-Interest-Debt
  • Session 8: Fractured Societies: Inequality and its Implications
  • Session 9: A Sick Planet: Climate Change & Ecological Limits
  • Session 10: Surveillance Capitalism: Technology & Commodification

Module 3 – Responses: 

  • Session 11: Democratising and Reforming Institutions
  • Session 12: The Church as Alternative Economy

Assessments

  • Online discussions (20%)
  • Creative Biblical-Theological Apoletic (30%)
  • Research Essay (50%)
Teaching Arrangements

This is a distance-taught paper.  Wellington-based students will be able to join the lecture at the Anglican Centre; Dunedin students can meet in one of the AV suites on campus.  Students elsewhere can join the videoconferences via Zoom.

Textbooks

There is no compulsory text book for this paper.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Communication, Critical thinking, Ethics, Environmental literacy, Research.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Students who complete this paper will be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding of how key biblical motifs can relate to contemporary economic discourse.

2. Demonstrate an understanding of the contribution made to economic ethical concerns by selected Christian writers.

3. Outline a theological ethical framework for engaging with economic concerns.

4. Offer a critical and creative theological analysis of a contemporary economic concern/issue.

5. Demonstrate analytical, interpretative and critical skills by engagement with scholarly texts.

6. Demonstrate research skills.

7. Demonstrate written and oral communication skills.

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Timetable

First Semester

Location
Dunedin
Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system
Blackboard

Lecture

Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend
L1 Wednesday 15:00-16:50 9, 12-13, 15-22

First Semester

Location
Dunedin
Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system
Blackboard