Karl-Josef Kuschel

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Karl-Josef Kuschel (* 6. March 1948 in Oberhausen ) was 1995-2013 Professor and Academic Director of Theology of Culture and Interreligious Dialogue at the Catholic -Theologischen Faculty and deputy director of the Institute for Ecumenical and Interreligious Research of the University of Tuebingen .


Karl-Josef Kuschel comes from a middle-class family, his father came from Silesia and was a civil servant in the city administration and later head of office. He has three siblings. With the aim of becoming a high school teacher, he studied German and Catholic theology at the universities of Bochum and Tübingen from 1967 to 1972 . In 1969 he went to Tübingen. In 1977 he received his doctorate in theology in Tübingen with a thesis on the subject of Jesus in contemporary German-language literature , supervised by Hans Küng and Walter Jens . In 1989 he completed his habilitation in ecumenical theology at the Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen with a thesis on the topic of Born Before All Times? The dispute about Christ's origin . From 1995 to 2013, Kuschel was professor for theology of culture and interreligious dialogue at the Faculty of Catholic Theology at the University of Tübingen; he is the deputy director of the Institute for Ecumenical and Interreligious Research.

From 1996 to 2005 he was a member of the executive committee of the international theological journal Concilium . Since 1990 he has been a member of the Advisory Board of Theology and Literature (London) and the Faith meets Faith Series (New York) as well as a member of the jury for the award of the Elisabeth Langgässer Literature Prize . From 1995 to 2009, Kuschel was Vice President of the Global Ethic Foundation (Tübingen). Since then he has been a member of the Foundation's Scientific Advisory Board. From 2002 to 2008 he was a co-founder and member of the Graduate School Global Challenges - transnational and transcultural solutions at the University of Tübingen. Since 2003 he has been a member of the board of the German-East Asian Science Forum (DOAW) at the University of Tübingen. He has been a member since 2010 and chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Friends of Abraham Society since 2016 . He is a signatory of the Church 2011 Memorandum : A Necessary Departure . In 2015 Karl-Josef Kuschel was appointed to the Board of Trustees of the German Book Trade Association for the award of the annual Peace Prize of the German Book Trade and was elected President of the International Hermann Hesse Society. His research interests are particularly the interreligious dialogue or trialogue and the traces of the religious in literature.


  • 1997 Award of an honorary doctorate by the University of Lund / Sweden.
  • 1998 in Soest award of the media prize of the Central Institute Islam-Archive-Germany, among other things for his book Vom Streit zum Wettstreit der Religionen - Lessing and the Challenge of Islam .
  • 2010 Herbert Haag Prize
  • 2011 Award of the integration prize for services to intercultural and interreligious dialogue by the “Apfelbaum” foundation (Cologne).
  • 2019 Theological Prize of the Salzburg University Weeks


On the theology of culture (selection)

  • Lust for knowledge: the theology of the 20th century. Piper, Munich 1994. ISBN 3-492-11853-4
  • In the mirror of the poet. Man, God and Jesus in 20th Century Literature. Patmos, Düsseldorf 1997. ISBN 3-491-72378-7
  • God's cruel fun? Heinrich Heine's life with the catastrophe. Patmos, Düsseldorf 2002. ISBN 3-491-70350-6
  • Perhaps God keeps some poets ... Literary Sketches Vol. 1 Topos Taschenbücher Vol. 556, Kevelaer-Mainz 2005.
  • Christmas with Thomas Mann. Patmos, Düsseldorf 2006. ISBN 978-3-491-72505-8
  • God loves to hide: literary sketches from Lessing to Muschg. (= Vol. 2) Grünewald, Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2007. ISBN 978-3-7867-2686-9
  • Zeitzeichen: Forty analyzes on culture, politics and religion. Klöpfer & Meyer, Tübingen 2008. ISBN 978-3-940086-14-3
  • Walter Jens, man of letters and Protestant. Attempto, Tübingen 2008. ISBN 978-3-89308-405-0
  • Hans Küng - a close-up. Piper, Munich 2008. ISBN 978-3-492-25334-5
  • The fight with God: Heinrich Heine (Abridged new edition of: God's cruel fun? Heinrich Heine's life with the catastrophe ) Patmos, Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2009. ISBN 978-3-491-72546-1
  • Motherland. The Mann family and Brazil (with Paulo Soethe and Frido Mann), Artemis & Winkler, Mannheim 2009. ISBN 978-3-538-07293-0
  • My mind to the unknown land. Poets and thinkers at Tübingen cemeteries (with Wilfried Setzler and Tilmann Rösch) Klöpfer u. Meyer, Tübingen 2009.
  • Jesus in the mirror of world literature. The balance of a century. Original texts and introductions Patmos, Düsseldorf 2010. ISBN 978-3-491-72423-5 (first published in 1999)
  • Poets' Christmas. Original texts from Thomas Mann to Reiner Kunze newly developed Patmos, Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2011. ISBN 978-3-8436-0066-8
  • Stock exchanges, banks, speculators: reflections in literature - consequences for ethos, economy and law (with Heinz-Dieter Assmann) Gütersloher Verlagshaus, Gütersloh 2011. ISBN 978-3-579-06690-5

On interreligious dialogue (selection)

  • Declaration on the Global Ethic. The Declaration of the Parliament of the World Religions (with Hans Küng), Piper, Munich 1993. ISBN 3-492-11958-1
  • Dispute over Abraham. What separates Jews, Christians and Muslims - and what unites them. Piper, Munich 1994, ISBN 3-492-03739-9 . New edition 2001. Also in English, American, Italian, Spanish, Croatian and Czech editions.
  • From quarrel to competition between religions. Lessing and the challenge of Islam , Patmos, Düsseldorf 1998. ISBN 3-491-72391-4 Also in Croatian edition.
  • Science and Global Ethic (with Hans Küng), Piper, Munich 1998. ISBN 3-492-03910-3
  • Jews, Christians, Muslims. Origin and future. Patmos, Düsseldorf 2007. ISBN 978-3-491-72500-3 Also in Croatian edition.
  • Christmas and the Koran Patmos, Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2008. ISBN 978-3-491-72531-7 Also in Italian edition.
  • Buddha and Christ: Pictures and Meditations (with Gunther Klosinski) Patmos, Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2009. ISBN 978-3-491-71329-1
  • Rilke and the Buddha: the story of a unique dialogue. Gütersloher Verlagshaus, Gütersloh 2010. ISBN 978-3-579-07020-9
  • The Ring Parable and the Global Ethic Project (with Hans Küng and Alois Riklin), Wallstein, Göttingen 2010. ISBN 978-3-8353-0615-8
  • Abrahamic Ecumenism: Dialogue and Cooperation (with Jürgen Micksch) Lembeck, Frankfurt / M. 2011. ISBN 978-3-87476-632-6
  • Martin Buber's writings on Christianity. Edition and comments = Martin Buber work edition Volume 9, Gütersloher Verlagshaus, Gütersloh 2011.
  • In the struggle for the true ring. Lessing's 'Nathan the Wise' - a challenge for religions. Patmos, Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2011. ISBN 978-3-8436-0031-6 (first time 2004) Also in Italian edition.
  • Life is building bridges. Pioneer of the interreligious dialogue Patmos, Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2011. ISBN 978-3-8436-0068-2
  • Feast at the heavenly table. How meal celebrations unite Jews, Christians and Muslims. Stuttgart-Ostfildern 2013. ISBN 978-3-8436-0366-9
  • Theodor Heuss, the Shoah, Judaism, Israel. Tübingen 2013. ISBN 978-3-86351-068-8
  • Martin Buber - his challenge to Christianity. Gütersloh 2015. ISBN 978-3-579-07086-5

Individual evidence

  1. Author biography of Grünewald-Verlag
  2. https://swrmediathek.de/player.htm?show=9d92b6f0-34f5-11e8-8c1f-005056a12b4c
  3. https://swrmediathek.de/player.htm?show=9d92b6f0-34f5-11e8-8c1f-005056a12b4c
  4. https://swrmediathek.de/player.htm?show=17ae6fa0-4a01-11e7-b649-005056a10824
  5. https://swrmediathek.de/player.htm?show=9d92b6f0-34f5-11e8-8c1f-005056a12b4c
  6. ^ Salzburg: "Theological Prize" for Karl-Josef Kuschel . Article dated April 26, 2019, accessed April 26, 2019.

Web links