Sorrow and Joy: The Impact of Imprisonment on the Theology of Dietrich Bonhoeffer



Fogle, Lindsey

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In this thesis, an examination of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s prison writings as contained in Letters and Papers from Prison will be conducted to determine the impact of imprisonment on his theology. To identify this impact, two of Bonhoeffer’s works written before his imprisonment, Discipleship and Ethics, will be compared to his Letters and Papers from Prison, with particular attention paid to themes of liberation, justice, and practical theology. These themes have been considered significant to religious prison writings and will serve as the point of comparison between Bonhoeffer’s writings prior to and during his imprisonment. This thesis will argue that while these themes are not absent from Bonhoeffer’s work prior to his imprisonment, they take on a new significance and potency in Letters and Papers from Prison as a result of his imprisonment.



Bonhoeffer, Dietrich, 1906-1945, Prison theology, Imprisonment, Liberation, Justice, Practical theology