IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE WORD: Poetry and Christology in the Gospel of John

In this course, we will engage in a close reading of John's gospel, looking very closely at John's poetic interweaving of theological motifs embodied in such important words as "word," "name," "glory," "truth," "light," and "grace." We will assume that John the apostle is the author, that he is a native speaker of Aramaic and a reader of Hebrew, but that he is composing directly into Greek -- composing with the poetry of Jesus ringing in his soul.


Required texts: Any edition of the Bible (I prefer the older versions, but RSV is tolerable); and my book, In the Beginning Was the Word: An Annotated Reading of the Prologue of John

Course Content

Week One - 10/6

Week Two - 10/13
Week Three - 10/20
Week Four - 10/27
Week Five - 11/3
Week Six - 11/10
Week Seven - 11/17
Week Eight - 12/1

About Instructor

Anthony Esolen

Anthony M. Esolen is a writer, social commentator, translator of classical poetry, and Writer-in-Residence at Magdalen College of the Liberal Arts. He taught at Furman University and Providence College before transferring to the Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in 2017 and Magdalen in 2019. A graduate of Princeton University, Esolen has translated into English Dante’s Divine Comedy, Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things, and Torquato Tasso’s Jerusalem Delivered. In addition to multiple books, he is the author of numerous articles in such publications as The Modern Age, The Catholic World Report, Chronicles, The Claremont Review of Books, The Public Discourse, First Things, Crisis Magazine, The Catholic Thing, and Touchstone, for which he serves as a senior editor. He is a regular contributor to Magnificat, and has written frequently for a host of other online journals.

3 Courses

Not Enrolled

Course Includes

  • 8 Lessons
  • Course Certificate