Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Has the sweeping revisionism of the Arian Controversy gone too far in sidelining the real theological and political dispute that shaped Christian doctrine?
Author: Shaw, Austin
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Restricted access.
Access from Institution:
The last three decades have produced a number of publications devoted to the revision of Athanasius of Alexandria's "Arian Controversy". The fruits of this re-evaluation highlight the complexities of post-Nicene theology long ignored in the shadow of Athanasius' crude "Arian" versus "orthodox" binary. It is now widely accepted in patristic studies that "Arian" was not a self-designation nor was the presbyter who lent his name to the heresy all that crucial a figure. A handful of scholars have moved beyond these helpful developments to revise the "Arian Controversy" out of existence. For some, "Arianism" was a rhetorical construct of a power hungry and abusive bishop who indiscriminately branded his personal opponents. Likewise, this revisionist thesis dismisses the activity of any "Eusebians", opting for the complete rejection of conflicting "parties". What remains is not alternate theologies and a genuine dispute, but a phantasmal "Athanasian Arianism". This dissertation analyzes this re-shaping of the post-Nicene years and offers a modest remonstrance to the most extreme aspects of the "Arian Controversy" revision. The study does not want to return to a place of Athanasian hagiography, but rather argue that "Arian" served as a useful polemical heuristic to identify a distinct theology that the bishop (and others) found unacceptable. After outlining the erosion of the "Arian Controversy", the thesis marshals evidence supporting a substantive theological dispute over which divergent networks clashed. In this vein, the work wants to recapture a genuine historical theology in that not everything is reducible to politics. The thesis argues that there is a responsible way of reading Athanasius' charged polemic.
Supervisor: Edwards, Mark Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Arianism ; Athanasius ; Saint ; Patriarch of Alexandria ; -373 ; Arius ; Nicaea ; revisionism