Medieval Religion: its topicality, methods and sources

Medieval Religion: its topicality, methods and sources
Summer School June June 22nd-June 27th
(Thursday-Saturday; Monday-Tuesday)


In society today, medieval religion is omnipresent. This is not only true in European city- and village-scapes, where medieval churches are still dominant features, but also in popular media such as games and television as well as in politics, where the Middle Ages are invoked either as the epitome of backwardness and cruelty, or as the golden age of white supremacy, true spirituality, and selfless heroism (to name but a few of the widely diverse images that the phrase ‘Middle Ages’ gives rise to). In the summer school students will be challenged by specialists in the field of medieval religion to position and develop their own research in relevant scholarly and cultural contexts. The instructors will give masterclasses from their own specialties (e.g. intellectual history, heretical and reform movements, interreligious relations, liturgy, gender and diversity). Groningen is an eminent place for a school on medieval religion, not only because of the unique expertise of the staff, added to with lecturers from the USA (funded by Fulbright) and Nijmegen, but also because its land- and cityscapes offer a clear example of the presence of the Middle Ages.

The school will be offered on site and hybridly.

Learning aims:

After this summer school:

  • Students can situate medievalist research, especially their own, in current scholarly, societal and cultural debates.
  • Students can critically reflect on the uses of contemporary theories of religion to the study of the Middle Ages and, if helpful, apply these creatively in their medievalist research.
  • Students can critically reflect on the contemporary relevance and topicality of medieval studies.
  • At an advanced level, students get to be trained in the setting up of medievalist research projects and the study of sources, with an eye to publication and acquiring funding.
  • Students can assess sources and literature in the interest of their own projects as shown in a presentation and a reflection paper.

Target groups:

  • Graduate Students .e.g. Master and Research Master students
  • Postgraduate students e.g. PhD students and postdocs.



  • Participation
  • Presentation on the last day on how to use the material of the summer school in one’s research
  • Reflection paper on how to use the material of the summer school in one’s research. 1500 words max.

Academic coordinator:

Dr. Mathilde van Dijk, Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies, Oude Boteringestraat 38, 9712 GK Groningen,

Register at:

Medieval Religion | University of Groningen Summer Schools ( April 1st at the latest; confirmation of your acceptance will follow before April 15th.

Image: Our Sweet Lady Star of the sea  in Maastricht, 15th century statue, still a major target for pilgrimage today, source Maria – Gereformeerde Kerk PKN Lunteren (

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