Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Forming Humanity – Redeeming the German Bildung Tradition - Chicago Scholarship Online
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Forming Humanity: Redeeming the German Bildung Tradition

Jennifer A. Herdt


This book offers a theological re-narration and interrogation of the late 18th-/early 19th-century German Bildung tradition, arguing that it yields vital resources for contemporary debates over humanism. Uncovering the roots of this tradition in Rhineland mysticism, Pietism, and earlier Christian humanisms, it articulates how Bildung ceased to mean passive formation or reformation at the hands of divine formative agency, and came to refer instead to active and autonomous human self-realization. At the same time, it argues that standard secularization narratives fail to account for the ways in ... More

Keywords: Bildung, Karl Barth, humanism, secularization, empire, Johann Gottfried Herder, Wilhelm von Humboldt, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Friedrich Schiller, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780226618487
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2020 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226618517.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jennifer A. Herdt, author
Yale University Divinity School