This unit introduces students to texts and figures at the limits of theological knowledge and experience. A diversity of mysticisms will be explored, including those within authorised theological traditions as well as experiential and bodily mysticisms that transgress official theological discourses and practices. Attention will be given to the relationship between mysticism and various forms of life in the world—including politics, ecclesiology, and the arts.

Unit code: CT2002Z

Unit status: Approved (New unit)

Points: 18.0

Unit level: Undergraduate Level 2

Unit discipline: Systematic Theology

Delivery Mode: Blended

Proposing College: St Francis College

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Learning outcomes


Demonstrate an understanding of the history of mystical theology, including key figures and concepts.


Demonstrate the ability to analyse theological concepts through active engagement with historical discourses and contemporary contexts.


Engage in peer learning through classroom discussions.

Unit sequence

This unit requires students to complete two Undergraduate Foundation level units in Systematic Theology.


Direct instruction, provocation, and self-directed learning approach to learning discipline specific skills (demonstrating an understanding of concepts in theology, reading, and reflecting on a range of theologians, and engaging in the process of re-constructing theology for the contemporary context, and classroom dialogues) through workshops as well as lectures, tutorials with targeted learning activities, and formative and summative assessment tasks.

Indicative Bibliography

  • Franke, William. On What Cannot Be Said, 2 vols., Notre Dame, 2007.
  • Hollywood, Amy. Sensible Ecstasy: Mysticism, Sexual Difference, and the Demands of History. University of Chicago, 2002.
  • McIntosh, Mark. Mystical Theology: The Integrity of Spirituality and Theology. Blackwell, 1998.
  • Sell, Michael. Mystical Languages of Unsaying. University of Chicago Press, 1994.
  • Steenbuch, Johannes Aakjær. Negative Theology: A Short Introduction. Cascade Books, 2022.
  • Prevot, Andrew. 2023. The Mysticism of Ordinary Life: theology, philosophy, and feminism. Oxford.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)
Seminar or Tutorial - Weekly Participation and Discussion Forum

Students must make substantive contributions to classroom discussion in at least 10 classes (or in the forum) in order to receive 10 marks. 

1000 10.0
Multiple Choice Quizzes or Tests - Quiz

Conceptual quiz based on unit readings that allows students to demonstrate mastery of their knowledge and engagement with class materials.

600 20.0
Oral Presentation - Oral Presentation

5-7 minute Oral Presentation – written tutorial essay or explication (if it is an experiential presentation) to be submitted.

1000 30.0
Essay - Essay / Creative Project

Argumentative essay (2000 words) or a creative project with a (1000-1500) word explication or reflection.

2000 40.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by Prof Albert Haddad on 19 May, 2023

Unit record last updated: 2023-05-19 13:25:15 +1000