The 5th and 6th lecture of History 5 pay attention to the Reformation. For anybody who is interested in this subject, these two lectures can be followed separate from the whole of the series.
One of the major questions to be presented is why the Reformation succeeded, or in other words, why what starts out as a theological dispute and a set of criticism on the policies of the Church of Rome, turns into a schism. What could have meant a change inside the church or could have been shoved aside as heresy, develops into a full blown revolution. Previous critics of the Church like Jan Hus and Girolamo Savonarola had been easily dealt with (executed) and those are only the named ones.
Professor Anderson shows how the situation with Marten Luther was significantly different. How geo-politics took his dispute with Rome and turned it into a movement and made not only a Church but also a different political map in Europe. From my own history lessons I remember how the newly risen printing press added to the spread of Luther's ideas, but Anderson gives a new angle to that phenomenon: the whole discourse was economically interesting for printers. Have a heated discussion and people from both camps want to have their pamphlets printed. Great insights in European and World history.
More History 5:
Europe and 1492,
The making of Europe in 1453,
From the Renaissance Until Today,
Agricultural revolution first,
The genitals of Christ: Anne asks and then Anderson replies.