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The Claims Of History: Strauss's "Mytho-Mania" And After

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Chapter Summary

The historical Jesus emerged as more "real" when seen against the literary portrayal of the Galilean setting. In particular Neander's life of Jesus account appeared as an effective response to Strauss's "mytho-mania". But by 1855, the traditional harmonies and devotional works no longer seemed sufficient. Hesitant to follow the historico-critical procedures that prevailed in German life of Jesus research after Strauss, Noyes's American colleagues relied on translations from German orthodox confessionalists. the different parties of New England divinity achieved considerable unanimity in defending the primacy of Jesus against an approach that displaced him in favor of the consciousness of the early Christian community. The concrete life of Jesus, Furness reiterated, was based on and mediated by the historically real; to make it an index of "fables", as Strauss did, was to come close to the brink of atheism.

Keywords: atheism; Christianity; German orthodox confessionalists; life of Jesus; mytho-mania; Strauss; Unitarian

10.1163/ej.9789004161665.i-224.22
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