Barth, Karl (1886-1968) - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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Karl Barth, the Swiss theologian, was born in Basel in 1886. He held professorships at Göttingen, Münster, Bonn, and Basel. His impact on the theological world dates from 1921, with the substantially revised second edition of his Der Römerbrief (the first edition was published in 1919). Herein he attacked the prevalent "subjectivism" of Protestant theology, in which he perceived the attempt to fit the Christian revelation into the mold of human preconceptions. After that, though Barth changed and developed many of his ideas, a single main concern ran through all his writings: namely, how to prevent theology from becoming an ideology, that is, a creation of human culture. This was the reason for his early violent attacks on the then fashionable liberal theology, as expounded, for instance, by Adolf von Harnack. According to Barth, the danger of such attempts to formulate a "reasonable" Christianity...

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This section contains 2,030 words
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Barth, Karl (1886-1968) from Macmillan. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.