When Thor rose up and the old gods prepared for the final battle against Christendom

Lecture by Associate Professor Carsten Selch Jensen, Faculty of Theology, UCPH

The headline of this paper is a quote from the Danish author Johannes Jørgensen writing about the outbreak of World War 1. To him the war was not only a conflict between peoples and nations but rather a spiritual war between a pagan barbarism represented by Germany and a Christian civilized world represented by the catholic countries of Belgium, France and Italy. Johannes Jørgensen is highly rhetorical in his booklet, Klokke Roland (The Bell of Roland) from 1916 describing the war a holy war with Christendom fighting paganism.

The examples from Jørgensen’s book will serve as a point of departure for a general discussion of the ideas war and Christianity from antiquity until modern times with a special notion of the concept of ‘just War’. 

The lecture is open to everyone. Registration, however, is required at roer@hum.ku.dk