ProjectTP 7 Der antike Literaturkanon im Kontext des Neuhumanismus und der Bildungs- und Universitätsreformen bis etwa…

Basic data

TP 7 Der antike Literaturkanon im Kontext des Neuhumanismus und der Bildungs- und Universitätsreformen bis etwa 1850
15/09/2022 to 15/09/2025
Abstract / short description:
The Greek and Latin classics had already developed such great
authority in antiquity that they could compared with the canonical texts
of religions. Christianity changed little about this. The influence of the
ancient scriptures fluctuated; sometimes they were integrated into
Christian educational models, and sometimes they were considered
with suspicion, but they always remained present. Beyond a religious
context, the Latin classics were indispensable for the active learning
of the Latin language. A fundamental change took place between
about 1750 and 1850 when, for the first time, ancient cultures largely
lost direct social influence. Ancient texts were no longer authorities for
philosophy and the natural sciences; the active use of the Latin
language and the emphasis on antiquity-based rhetoric in education
were abolished. Nevertheless, enthusiasm for antiquity reached a
new peak. Greek and Latin studies formed the center of the newly
built and consistently secularly organized grammar schools
(Gymnasium), classical philology became the foundation of a new
epoch in the humanities at universities. Here, a fundamental
reevaluation of the ancient texts took place, which, in the terms of this
research proposal, can be interpreted as re-sacralization. At the same
time, however, university philology increased in use as a historicalcritical
science which pushed back the texts from timeless ideality to
their own historical context, thus making them one subject among
others, which de facto initiated the process of desacralization. The
disciplinary connection of philology to the professional classical
philologists also created a culture of experts which opposed the idea
of a general antiquity-based education. The parallels in the
development of the understanding of religion and the Bible in theology
can be seen; and while the relationship between historical-critical
textual exegesis and religion has been discussed in detail, the
relationship between philology and general human education in
antiquity has been, up to now, only marginally considered. This
project attempts to analyze this relationship more closely by asking
what the contents and goals of philological activity were in the time of
neo-humanism within a general framework. The history of philology
up to now has been one-sided in that it focuses only on achievements
which have been proven to be influential based on a modern historical
perspective. Only a more complete picture allows us to understand
the process of the resacralization of antiquity during the century of
neo-humanism in the context of the hermeneutics of ancient texts
Lateinische Literatur

Involved staff


Faculty of Humanities
University of Tübingen
Institute of Philology
Department of Ancient Studies and Art History, Faculty of Humanities
Research training group: Ambiguity – Production and Reception
Research training groups

Local organizational units

Institute of Philology
Department of Ancient Studies and Art History
Faculty of Humanities


Bonn, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

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