“Rituals are everywhere”

A new textbook about ritual phenomena by historian Barbara Stollberg-Rilinger

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A new textbook by  historian Barbara Stollberg-Rilinger, co-ordinator of the Cluster of Excellence ‘Religion and Politics’, provides an overview of the many different ritual phenomena throughout history. Published in the series ‘Historische Einführungen [Historical Introductions]’ by the Campus Press, the volume ‘Rituals’, introduces the most important theories and debates in the study of historical rituals.

As the historian explains, rituals can be found  everywhere in history. Appointments to office and peace-making, baptisms, weddings and funerals, the overthrow of monuments and celebrations of remembrance – rituals have a fundamental, socially structuring function. That is truer still for earlier epochs than for today. Ever since the historical discipline discovered this topic in the wake of the ‘cultural turn’, more and more phenomena have been examined through the lens of ritual theory, Stollberg-Rilinger argues. Prof. Stollberg-Rilinger heads Project B2-22 ‘Beyond Confessional Clarity: On the Discursive Formation of Heterodox Groups in the Early Modern Period’ at the Cluster of Excellence ‘Religion and Politics’.

Literature: Stollberg-Rilinger, Barbara, Rituale (Historische Einführungen, vol. 16), Frankfurt/Main et al.: Campus 2013.