Eric Carlsson

Position title: Teaching Associate


Phone: 608.263.1849

Office: 5217 Mosse Humanities
Mailbox: 5034 Mosse Humanities
Office Hours: Tuesdays 11:00am-1:00pm and by appointment

Eric Carlsson headshot


I study the intellectual and religious history of early modern Europe and the north Atlantic world, with a focus on the intersection of religion and Enlightenment thought, c. 1650-1800. My research interests include the history of theology and biblical scholarship, the Christian humanist tradition, Jewish-Christian relations, German Pietism, historiography, and theories of secularization. My current research explores the creation of Protestant “liberal” theology in the wider context of the German Enlightenment’s debates over the nature and place of religion in modern society. I teach a range of courses on thought and religion in Europe and the Atlantic world since 1500 as well as a two-semester survey of themes in Western intellectual and religious history from antiquity to the present.


Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison
M.A., University of Wisconsin-Madison
M.Div., Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
B.A., University of Michigan

Selected Publications

  • “The Protestant Enlightenment.” In The Oxford History of Modern German Theology, vol. 1, ed. Grant Kaplan and Kevin Vander Schel (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2023).
  • “Eighteenth-Century Neology.” In The Oxford Handbook of Early Modern Theology, 1600-1800, ed. Ulrich L. Lehner, Richard Muller, and A. G. Roeber (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016).
  • “Pietism and Enlightenment Theology’s Historical Turn: The Case of Johann Salomo Semler.” In The Pietist Impulse in Christianity, ed. Christian T. Collins Winn, et al. (Eugene, OR: Pickwick Publications, 2011).
  • “The Eighteenth Century,” “The Enlightenment,” “Johann Lorenz von Mosheim,” “Johann Salomo Semler,” and “Rationalism.” In Dictionary of Luther and the Lutheran Traditions, ed. Timothy J. Wengert, et al. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2017).

Selected Awards

  • Fellowship for Enlightenment Studies, Interdisziplinäres Zentrum für die Erforschung der Europäischen Aufklärung, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg
  • Excellence in Teaching and Student Engagement Award, Department of History, UW–Madison
  • Distinguished Honors Faculty Award, College of Letters & Science, UW-Madison
  • Fellow of the UW–Madison Teaching Academy
  • University Housing Honored Instructor, UW–Madison

History Courses

  • History 201 – The Historian’s Craft: Belief and Unbelief in Modern Europe
  • History 201 – The Historian’s Craft: Religion and the Enlightenment
  • History 208 – Western Intellectual and Religious History to 1500
  • History 209 – Western Intellectual and Religious History since 1500
  • History 229 – Religious Renewal in the Atlantic World, 1600-1800
  • History 409 – Christianity in the Atlantic World, 1500-1800
  • History 411 – The Enlightenment and Its Critics
  • History 600 – Religion and the Enlightenment