Between Sanctity and Depravity: A Protestant Contribution to the Theory of Human Dignity

15 Pages Posted: 30 Sep 2003 Last revised: 7 Mar 2020

See all articles by John Witte

John Witte

Emory University School of Law

Abstract

Martin Luther (1483-1546) was one of the great revolutionaries in the Western legal tradition. The Protestant Reformation that he inaugurated produced fundamental changes in legal theory, political organization, church-state relations, marriage, education, and social welfare. These changes were inscribed on the legal and confessional systems of that period. They have had an enduring effect on modern public, private, and criminal law, and on modern ideals of liberty, equality, and dignity. This essay surveys these sweeping changes that Luther's Reformation wrought, and then analyzes more closely the sources of inspiration and integration of these reforms in Luther's famous theory of the two kingdoms.

Keywords: Law and Religion, Legal History, Theology, Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther, Human Dignity, Human Rights, Religious Freedom, Decalogue

Suggested Citation

Witte, John, Between Sanctity and Depravity: A Protestant Contribution to the Theory of Human Dignity. Villanova Law Review 48 (2003): 727-762, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=447881 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.447881

John Witte (Contact Author)

Emory University School of Law ( email )

1301 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States
404-727-6980 (Phone)
404-712-8605 (Fax)

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
432
Abstract Views
4,509
rank
83,178
PlumX Metrics