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Seminar Week 5 - Debate: An Age of Decline or Reform?

Discussion topics

  • Did the late medieval Church prosper or decline?
  • Were late medieval people 'Christians'?
  • How should historians interpret movements like the Hussites, Humanism and the devotio moderna?
  • Was the Reformation 'inevitable'?



  • Prepare for a debate between two groups advancing arguments for / against the set proposition (as specified in your Teams channels).
  • Try to substantiate your points with reference to primary and secondary sources
  • Evaluating scholarly opinions will also help you with the first module assignment of a book review




  • All materials considered in seminars 1-4 so far; do go beyond the 'essential' pieces of reading and explore further items / links on the respective weekly webpages as well as our general printed / digital resources


Johan Huizinga, author of the critical work The Waning of the Middle Ages (1919)

Bernd Moeller

Bernd Moeller observed unprecedented levels of pious activity in Imperial Free Cities on the eve of the Reformation.