“Sola lectura?” - ITE publishes first study on reading

The Institute for Theology and Ethics (ITE) of the Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches presents its first study, titled “Sola lectura? Current challenges of reading from a Protestant perspective.” The transdisciplinary cooperative effort of the expert commission founded in 2014 opens up new perspectives on the topic of reading. The publication was presented on the occasion of the Reformation Jubilee inauguration in Basel.

Reading is not to be taken for granted. The current changes and developments in media technology and use present a challenge to Christianity as a religion of the book. Opportunities presenting themselves must be taken – for communication and for a sense of humanity. These fundamental issues are examined from four perspectives: Christianity and media history; reading to change one’s way of seeing (oneself); reading nature; reading justice and democracy. 

“Take and read” – the key to an entire life can be found in this phrase coined by Augustine.  By distributing the Bible, Protestantism established a “universal priesthood of all readers.” “Reading is the prerequisite for fully participating in democracy and the constitutional state,” said Peter Schmid, President of the ITE and Vice President of the FSPC Council, on November 11 in Basel.  “Issues of justice are at stake when it comes to the question of who has access to reading and reading practices.”

Founded in 2014, the ITE consists of 14 scholars from all regions of Switzerland.  Most of them come from the field of theology.  Legal studies, education and the natural sciences are also represented. The ITE addresses societal issues by initiating a dialogue between theology and other fields.

Order the brochure (in German) “Sola lectura? Aktuelle Herausforderungen des Lesens aus protestantischer Sicht” (Sola lectura? Current challenges of reading from a Protestant perspective”).