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Dynamics of Religious Reform

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Dynamics of Religious Reform

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Charity and Social Welfare

The Dynamics of Religious Reform in Northern Europe, 1780-1920

Leen Van Molle (ed.)

How churches in Northern Europe reinvented their role as providers of social relief. Charity is a word that fits well in the history of religion and churches, whereas the concept of social reform seems to belong more to the vocabulary of the modern welfare states. Christian charity found itself, during the long nineteenth century, within the maelstrom of social turmoil. In this context of social unrest, although charity managed to confirm its relevance, it was also subjected to fierce criticism, as well as to substitute state-run forms of social care and insurance. The history of the welfare states remained all too blind to religion. This fourth volume in the series ‘Dynamics of Religious Reform’ unravels how the churches in Britain and Ireland, Denmark, Sweden and Norway, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium shaped and adjusted their understanding of poverty. It reveals how they struggled with the ‘social question’ and often also with the modern nation states to which they belonged. Either in the periphery of public assistance or in a dynamic interplay with the state, political parties and society at large, the churches reinvented their tradition as providers of social relief. Contributors: Andreas Holzem (Universität Tübingen), Dáire Keogh (St Patrick’s College, Dublin City University), Frances Knight (The University of Nottingham), Nina Koefoed (Aarhus Universitet), Katharina Kunter (Germany), Bernhard Schneider (Universität Trier), Aud V. Tønnessen (Universitetet Oslo), Annelies van Heijst (Tilburg University), H.D. van Leeuwen and M.H.D. van Leeuwen (Universiteit Utrecht), Leen Van Molle (KU Leuven).

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The Churches

The Dynamics of Religious Reform in Northern Europe, 1780-1920

Joris van Eijnatten, Paula Yates (eds)

Developments in church-state relationships in north-western Europe between 1780 and 1920 had a substantial impact on reformist ideas, projects and movements within the churches. Conversely, the dynamics of ecclesiastical reform prompted the state itself to react in various ways, through direct intervention or by adapting its policies and/or promulgating laws. To which extent did church and state mutually influence each other in matters concerning ecclesiastical reform? How and why did they do so? These are the central questions posed in The Churches, the second volume in the series ‘Dynamics of Religious Reform'. The volume concentrates on the reforms generated by the churches themselves and on their response to the political and legal reforms initiated by the state. It shows how processes of church reform evolved differently in different countries. The position and role of organised religion in the modern state is a matter of continual debate. This volume offers historical insight into the enduring but sometimes uneasy relationship between church and secular authority.

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Piety and Modernity

The Dynamics of Religious Reform in Northern Europe, 1780-1920

Anders Jarlert (ed.)

Piety and Modernity examines the dynamics of religious reform from the point of view of piety and devotional life between 1780 and 1920 in Britain, Ireland, Scandinavia, Germany, and the Low Countries. The ‘long' nineteenth century saw the introduction of devotional organizations as a means of channeling popular religion. This era also witnessed the translation and publication of devotional books, journals, and pamphlets on a massive scale. This edited volume explores the nature of pious reforms in such areas as liturgy, saint cults, pilgrimage, confraternities, hymns, and Bible translation, with an emphasis on the changing patterns in religious expression at the collective and individual level, the growing influence of home missions, and the relations between piety and print culture. The interaction of piety and modernity is an important theme. While individual piety was often connected with the authority of church leaders and confessional teaching, the long nineteenth century gave rise to new forms of individualism, involving grassroots initiatives. This volume offers a rich overview of a range of interrelated national practices concerning piety in the nineteenth century.

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Political and Legal Perspectives

The Dynamics of Religious Reform in Northern Europe, 1780-1920

Keith Robbins (ed.)

Before the last quarter of the eighteenth century there was a generally clear and remarkably uniform pattern of church-state relationships across Europe. In the course of the nineteenth century this firm alliance between political and religious establishments broke down. Religious pluralism developed everywhere, though at different speeds, requiring church and state to reach fresh solutions. This volume Political and Legal Perspectives highlights the impact of broad political change, ‘democratization', on the question of religious reform, in Northern Europe. Competing political parties expressed contrasting views about whether ‘the state' should be ‘neutral' or whether it should give particular support to one or other churches. It is hardly surprising that there was no simple ‘one fits it all' solution. Some countries were multi-confessional where others were still in some sense confessional. This volume shows a set of problems and circumstances which were often common but which led to outcomes which were, and to an extent still remain, ‘different'. The research focus of this book is historical but how ‘the state' deals with ‘the church' (and ‘the church' with ‘the state') continues to be a live and pressing public issue in a multi-confessional and multi-faith European Union.

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