The first detailed comparison between the theologies of Friedrich Schleiermacher and the early dialectical theology of Karl Barth. Matthias Gockel shows that the doctrine of election in Barth's early theology bears a remarkable resemblance to the position of Schleiermacher. He challenges the conventional wisdom that these two positions - or `liberal theology' and `dialectical theology' - stand in irreconcilable opposition. Barth articulates a fresh assessment of the doctrine not only in Church Dogmatics II/2, but in the second edition of his Epistle to the Romans and in his first series of lectures on Systematic Theology, the so-called Goettingen Dogmatics. Hence, a resemblance between Schleiermacher and Barth is already discernible in Barth's early theology - at a time when he was writing his most virulent criticisms of Schleiermacher.