Courses in English

The following courses will be tutored in English during the autumn term 2022 and the spring term 2023 at The Newman Institute.

Autumn Term 2022

29th August – 15th January

Module 1 (29th August – 6th November) 
Module 2 (7th November – 15th January)

Module 1

Theology of Creation

Creation represents the Christian key to ecology. But how does this doctrine relate to contemporary ecological and social crises? What can the theology of creation teach us about the relationship between creation and the Creator? Using biblical exegesis and critical thinking techniques, students will analyse the human role in creation and the three fundamental relationships that ground life itself: with God, with neighbours, and with Nature.

Ecology. Systematic theology
Local course, 7,5 p
Course leader: Dominik Terstriep

Francis and Clare of Assisi – Friendship, Faith and Ecology

Eight hundred years ago, Francis and Clare, like millions of young people around the globe do today, embraced ideals and lifestyles entirely unimaginable to their peers. But what was the passionate motivation behind these choices? Based on source-critical readings, this course will demonstrate how models of poverty, fraternity, friendship, spirituality and environmental sustainability are connected and represent inseparable and vital pillars of every society.

Ecology. Historical theology
Local course and half distance, 7,5 p
Course leader: Fredrik Heiding


What can we know? How can we be certain about anything? What are the sources of our knowledge? These are examples of questions in the field of epistemology. The course sets these questions raised in a historical context, and presents and analyses some of the answers that philosophers have given.

Local course and half distance, 7,5 p
Course leader: Erik Åkerlund

Module 2

A New Heaven and a New Earth

A theological understanding of ecology provokes the need for an ecological and eschatological reflection on how ultimate fulfilment in Christ includes the liberation and transformation of earthly nature. During the course, students will have an opportunity to analyse caring for the world in relation to the hope for a new earth and a new heaven and to understand that the eschatological fulfilment does not entail abolishing the natural world but anticipates its unimaginable fulfilment.

Ecology. Systematic theology
Local course, 7,5 p
Course leader: Mårten Björk

Climate Change and Life Choices: A Christian History of the Environment

The present socio-ecological crisis compels us to look back in history and consider the role played by natural events and catastrophes on the world’s population. Were people passively reacting to such challenges, or did they take active responsibility for the impact they had on their surroundings? This course will look at some key historical events from an ecological perspective and reflect on the conscious shaping of an environmentally-friendly way of life.

Ecology. Theological Studies of Culture and Society
Local course and half distance, 7,5 p
Course leader: Barbara Crostini

Logic and Argumentation

One of the central problems in modern logic is the question of what a valid argument and a good argumentation is. In order to answer this question, arguments expressed in natural languages are translated into formal languages of symbolic logic, whereby their logical structure stands out more clearly. In this course, two such formal languages are studied: propositional language and predicate-logic language. Several methods in logic for analysis of the validity of arguments are also studied.

Local course and half distance, 7,5 p
Course leader: Taeda Tomic

Analytic Philosophy in the 20th Century

Analytic Philosophy had a dominant position throughout the 20th century in the English-speaking world. It was characterized by its close proximity to the natural sciences and placed high emphasis on formal analyses and empirical methods. The course provides a review of the development of analytic philosophy from Gottlob Frege up to the present. Particular emphasis is placed upon reading and reflecting on the texts of some analytical philosophers.

Local course and half distance, 7,5 p
Course leaders: Tomas Ekenberg and Erik Åkerlund

Spring Term 2023

16th January – 4th June

Module 3 (16th January – 26th March)
Module 4 (27th March – 4th June)

Module 3

Ecclesiology with Mariology

This course is an exploratory study of the foundations and the mission of the Church. It examines the basic concepts and important debated issues in Catholic ecclesiology. The course also gives an introduction to the theological significance of Mary. Ecclesiology and Mariology are intrinsically interwoven. Like Mary, the Church is called on to be true to the Word of God. The topics will be discussed from an ecumenical perspective.

Systematic theology
Half distance, 7,5 p
Course leader: Bernhard Knorn

Environmental Law and Social Love

Environmental law constitutes a rich set of norms both at the national and the international level. However, its complexity also enables large-scale international conflicts. The question is whether it is possible to look at environmental law from another perspective and propose a vision for it based on the ideal of social love? Based on biblical tradition this course will attempt to anchor this vision by intimately linking the care for humanity and legal obligations.

Ecology. Systematic theology
Local course, 7,5 p
Course leader: Vanja Romlin

A Good Disruption – Reinventing Economical Models

The socio-environmental crisis comprises many elements, from climate change to financial and social breakdown. While the experts have been talking much about possible solutions when looking into the future, only a few have looked back to understand where things went wrong. This course will provide insight into how the world economy’s dysfunctions came to be and what it will take to correct the models of growth that have proved incapable of ensuring a healthy environment.

Ecology. Systematic theology
Local course, 7,5 p
Course leaders: Tomas Ekenberg and others

Philosophy of Science with Natural Philosophy

The sciences occupy a prominent place in contemporary thinking, as well as in society in general. In this course we will take a closer look at the knowledge in different sciences claims and methods. In what sense can science be said to provide knowledge? What claims do the sciences make when it comes to describing reality? Can they help us understand fundamental aspects of the world, such as its temporal and causal structure, or the phenomenon of life in the physical universe?

Half distance, 7,5 p
Course leaders: Erik Åkerlund and Daniel Saudek

Ends of the World

How do we find purpose and meaning while living in the face of existential threats such as pandemics, climate calamity and thermonuclear war? What can we learn from people in other historical periods who have anticipated the end of their civilization or of humanity itself? Aided by in-class interviews with invited guests, the course explores struggle and hope on the edge of an ending.

Local course in Stockholm, 7,5 p
Course leaders: Brian Palmer and Gustav Fridolin

Module 4

Ecological Conversion

Mounting scientific evidence shows that our continuous efforts to convince consumers to adopt a sustainable lifestyle are, by and large, futile. Environmental sociology indicates that individual behaviour is embedded in and guided by societal structures. The challenges posed by this situation will expose what true ecological conversion means and how it relates to a transformation of hearts and minds toward the greater love of God, each other and of creation.

Ecology. Systematic theology
Local course, 7,5 p
Course leader: Philip Geister

Science and Religion

In this course the relation between science, on the one hand, and religion (particularly Christianity), on the other, is studied from a historical as well as a systematic perspective. With an emphasis on the sciences revolving around the study of climate, this course aims to give the students the ability to critically reflect on the possibilities as well as the limitations of the sciences, especially in relation to the claims and the scope of religions.

Ecology. Systematic theology
Local course, 7,5 p
Course leaders: Ulf Jonsson and Erik Åkerlund

The Desert Fathers

This course is an introduction to the academic study of the early monastic movements in Egypt, Roman Palestine, and Syria, from the fourth to the sixth century. The desert fathers’ and mothers’ emphasis on asceticism, prayer, and obedience will be analysed in its historical context. The relation between theology and the lived life will be thematized throughout. The course will also discuss the reception history of early monasticism in later Christian movements.

Exegetic theology
Half distance, 7,5 p
Course leader: Mathias Nygaard