Shirley Jackson Case

Shirley Jackson Case (1872–1947) was an historian of early Christianity, and a liberal theologian. He served as dean of the Divinity School at the University of Chicago.


  • When all the evidence brought against Jesus' historicity is surveyed it is not found to contain any elements of strength.
    • Shirley Jackson Case, "The Historicity of Jesus: An Estimate of the Negative Argument", The American Journal of Theology, 1911, 15 (1)
  • The defectiveness of [the Christ myth theory's] treatment of the traditional evidence is perhaps not so patent in the case of the gospels as it is in the case of the Pauline epistles. Yet fundamentally it is the same. There is the same easy dismissal of all external testimony, the same disdain for the saner conclusions of modern criticism, the same inclination to attach most value to extremes of criticism, the same neglect of all the personal and natural features of the narrative, the same disposition to put skepticism forward in the garb of valid demonstration, and the same ever present predisposition against recognizing any evidence for Jesus' actual existence... The New Testament data are perfectly clear in their testimony to the reality of Jesus' earthly career and they come from a time when the possibility that the early framers of tradition should have been deceived upon this point is out of the question.
    • Shirley Jackson Case, The Historicity Of Jesus, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1912, pp. 76-77 & 269

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