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38th International Barth Conference about Barth's theological exegesis

The Karl-Barth-Tagung will continue in 2020 under the name International Barth Conference in The Netherlands. The official language of the conference is English.

About the conference theme

What exactly is the systematic or dogmatic theologian doing when she translates biblical and exegetical matter into systematic discourse? Karl Barth is famous for the long biblical excurses in his Church Dogmatics. Besides, he has written at least six commentaries on Pauline texts (from the first edition of his Letter to the Romans until his brochure on Christ and Adam according to Romans 5); and he has extendedly lectured on John, James, and Ephesians. He has often stated that the exegetical parties in his books were even dearer to him than the dogmatic ‘bigger font’ sections. However, how do we evaluate this issue a hundred years after the First Commentary on Romans and fifty years after Barth’s passing away? Barth has exercised great influence on exegetes of all kinds of schools – but is his voice still relevant in biblical studies? And, the other way around, how can systematic theologians (more or less) operating in Barth’s tradition, remain attentive to new exegetical insights? And how about the place of the Old Testament in questions like these?


Lectures will be given by:

  • Prof. Dr. Martinus C. de Boer, Amsterdam, Karl Barth on Galatians
  • Prof. Dr. Maike Schult, Marburg, Karl Barth’s Method in Explaining Literature 
  • Dr. G. van Zanden, Urk, Karl Barth’s Exegesis Read from a Breukelmanian Perspective
  • Dr. Gerhard Bergner, Herzberg, Precritical, uncritical or postcritical? Barth’s Exegesis in Conflict

Call for papers

At the conference there will be timeslots in which short papers (max. 2500 words) on these issues can be presented and discussed. Proposals (max. 250 words) may be sent to dr. E. van ‘t Slot, e.vant.slot@pthu.nl before January 1st, 2020. Papers on topics of Barth and theological exegesis will be given priority.

Practical information

Date: 9-11th March 2020
Location: De Glind (The Netherlands)
Pricing: € 260  (Students fee: € 180)
Registration includes: full program access, lodging and meals, coffee and tea during the day. Refreshments and drinks at the bar in the bar are for your own expense.