In his Stanford dissertation, Christendom Divided and Restored, Whalen explored the division between the Latin and Greek churches c. 1000–1300, including the promise of their future reunion before the apocalypse. This eschatological vision of Christian unity inaugurated his interest in all things apocalyptic, leading to his first book, Dominion of God. In this work, Whalen examines how during the High Middle Ages—an era of crusade, mission, and other forms of Christian expansion—the clerical elite of the Western Church imagined the future conversion of Jews, Muslims, pagans and Eastern Christians into “one flock” under “one shepherd,” the pope of Rome. Click here to hear his interview about Dominion of God: Christendom and Apocalypse in the Middle Ages on the web program “New Books in History.”
Whalen recently published a source-reader, Pilgrimage in the Middle Ages. The documents assembled in this collection illustrate the far-reaching significance and consequences of pilgrimage for medieval culture, society, economics, politics, and spirituality, showcasing the ways in which pilgrimages inspired and shaped the experiences of commoners and nobles, men and women, clergy and laity for over one thousand years.
Over time, Whalen’s fascination with the end of days has expanded to include modern apocalyptic scenarios and their political significance, as seen in his recent article, “Antichrist as (Anti)Charisma: Reflections on Weber and the ‘Son of Perdition’,” available here [http://www.mdpi.com/2077-1444/4/1/77] in the online journal Religions.