We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
 >   > 
The Fall of the Pagans and the Origins of Medieval Christianity Lecture

The Fall of the Pagans and the Origins of Medieval Christianity

Regular Price:$34.95
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

Explore the dramatic interaction between Judaism, Christianity, and paganism in Rome from the 1st to the 6th centuries. Why did pagan Rome clash with the early Christians? What was it like to be a Jew or a Christian under Roman law? And how did Christianity ultimately achieve dominance in the Roman Empire?

Over the course of 24 lectures, Professor Harl enables you to grasp the full historical sweep of this critically important era and its key figures. You'll examine why Christianity was able to emerge and endure and, in turn, spark a critical transition for religion, culture, and politics that underpins much of how today's Western world - both Christian and non-Christian alike - thinks about ethics, sin, redemption, forgiveness, progress, and so much more.

While the Judeo-Christian values that have shaped society's ideas are ones we might today take for granted, their emergence from an ancient era dominated by loyalties to a vast array of gods would once have seemed the most unlikely of narratives. Even after the Roman emperor Constantine converted to Christianity in A.D. 312, it would not be until the 6th-century reign of Justinian that medieval Christianity would emerge and this new historical pathway confirmed.

In this magnificent course, Professor Harl brings to life some of the most important and fascinating episodes of the era, taking you on a vibrant trek through the past - one that will lead you to a deeper understanding of the bedrock beliefs of Western culture.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2011 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2011 The Great Courses

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (272 )
5 star
 (184)
4 star
 (64)
3 star
 (18)
2 star
 (5)
1 star
 (1)
Overall
4.5 (244 )
5 star
 (162)
4 star
 (55)
3 star
 (22)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (3)
Story
4.5 (246 )
5 star
 (162)
4 star
 (56)
3 star
 (25)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (1)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Lee Bartlesville, OK, United States 09-30-13
    Lee Bartlesville, OK, United States 09-30-13 Member Since 2014

    autodidact wannabe

    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    33
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not what they told you in Sunday School"
    What made the experience of listening to The Fall of the Pagans and the Origins of Medieval Christianity the most enjoyable?

    I grew up in a very Christian family, but hardly knew anything about the history of my faith. Of course, I was told how the religion started in Sunday School, but years later I have grown to seek accurate information. After years of study, I've realized much of the church history presented in Sunday School is the religious equivalent of urban legends. Religion is a powerful force in our lives, and everyone, religious or not, ought to seek out scholarly works (not apologetics) that throw the light of reason and real facts into our world.


    Have you listened to any of Professor Kenneth W. Harl’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Professor Kenneth W. Harl did a fantastic job of taking all the complex social issues and weaving them into a coherent whole. It does take careful listening, and the professor never talks down to us. Sometimes you can really hear the passion in his voice.


    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    shane ENCINITAS, CALIFORNIA, United States 09-19-14
    shane ENCINITAS, CALIFORNIA, United States 09-19-14 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An excellent and thought provoking series"
    Which scene was your favorite?

    The "what if" moment of Julian the Apostate. Here was a pagan emperor who was born as a Christian, and attempted to turn back the clock on the Christian revolution. He knew what was necessary for a neo-pagan resurgence, and had he lived it might have worked.This lecture in particular opened my eyes to the realization that the history of the West and possibly the whole world didn't have to turn out the way it did.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    "unknown" 02-04-14
    "unknown" 02-04-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    86
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    36
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fascinating details"

    This course is rich with detail about religion and philosophy during the four hundred years or so that it took for Christianity to engulf the Roman empire. I would so loved to have been a student in this course and participated in the discussion sections!

    The narration is okay, not great. (I quibbled mentally with Prof. Harl's pronunciation on many occasions.) The organization of the material is pretty good. Prof. Harl takes care to remind you of previous lectures, when he references them, and he does a nice job of hinting about interesting topics to be covered later. The timeline of events is fairly clear, although there were some gaps (the entire fifth century, for example) that I don't remember hearing anything about. At any rate, I found myself thinking about the lectures in between listening, and looking forward to my next opportunity to listen.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    AlexIndia Fort Worth, TX, United States 03-08-15
    AlexIndia Fort Worth, TX, United States 03-08-15 Member Since 2011

    I am a national speaker on the relationship between the ancient western civilization and present day politics. Follow me!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    58
    22
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    6
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Thorough review of this period"

    The lecture was very good. It covers the detail of each reign of each emperor involved with the empire's creep toward Christianity from Platonism and varied pagan religions. I would suggest a good understanding of Roman history and some familiarity with the emperors. I listened to the lecture covering all of Rome be for this one. I plan to move on to the three lectures on the Middle Ages next.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donttreadonme 07-09-17 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    15
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very thorough"

    Very detailed and thorough history to be found in this course. Lectures don't appear to have any type of bias which I find enjoyable because it allows the listener the ability to draw their own conclusions.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. Arnwine Washington, DC United States 03-28-17
    A. Arnwine Washington, DC United States 03-28-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very informative and captivating"

    Great scholarly presentation. Great course for Christians and secularists alike. Lecturer easy to follow throughout the course.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim R. Prussic St. Helens, Oregon, USA 03-14-17
    Tim R. Prussic St. Helens, Oregon, USA 03-14-17 Member Since 2015

    I like books. I really like beer. I love Jesus.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    20
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "really excellent - even better the second time!"

    I've listened to this set of lectures twice, and I don't think I'm done with them yet. Professor Harl is the man, though I slowed him down to .90 playing rate, which really helped me take in the impressive amount of information. Bravo!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    learner 03-06-17
    learner 03-06-17
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    19
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent all around."

    Unbiased and accurate. This course affords the appropriate amount of detail. It was highly entertaining and eye opening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Martin 09-02-16
    Martin 09-02-16 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Absolutely fantastic!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Fall of the Pagans and the Origins of Medieval Christianity the most enjoyable?

    This is a fantastic course that deals exactly with the subject described in the title. How has the process that transformed de mediterranean pagan world into a Christian empire that set the bases for the medieval western tradition?


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Filled with great anecdotes that illustrate the lectures.


    What about Professor Kenneth W. Harl’s performance did you like?

    The presentation is very clear. Interesting and extremely well documented. The professor is very passionate about the subject. At the same time he delivers perfectly understandable explanations of the historical processes that led to this cultural and religious transformation.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It's simply great. One of the best great courses I've done.


    Any additional comments?

    I absolutely recommend this course to anyone interested in the subject.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 03-27-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    46
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    40
    39
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Course; Lives up to the name."

    Excellent delivery by a dedicated professor. LOTS of material (years, names, places, etc.) covered over any 600 years. So my brain glazed over at times. Prof. Harl pulled it all together for me. Outstanding course.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Ed
    1/26/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Daunting title. Captivating analysis"
    If you could sum up The Fall of the Pagans and the Origins of Medieval Christianity in three words, what would they be?

    Clear reasoned humble


    What did you like best about this story?

    Professor Harl is passionate about his subject and delivers a compelling and poised appraisal of a complex process that he sees as descernible in shape speed and direction.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    Professor Harl is careful to keep the listener away from presumptions drawn from the modern world but rather to configure the story of this transformation by careful analysis of culture economics and politics of the time.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No, there is too much material. I have listen to this book twice and will undoubtedly do so again. In addition it pays to read other authors too to see that this is a contribution to the profession of history more than an asserted viewpoint. There are other writers such as Bart Ehrman who I would read after reading Professor Harl


    Any additional comments?

    Professor Harl is particularly knowledgable about coinage which adds an element I have not encountered before

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.