Annual themes

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The digitalization of religion: Participation and belonging in a networked world

Digitalization is changing society, including religion and the study of religion. This is the focus of the Cluster of Excellence’s annual theme for 2023/24. Whether digital prayers, online confessionals, or fatwas on the internet – traditional religious communities are trying out new forms of religion on the web and social  media, in apps and AI. In the study of religion, digital methods are opening up new insights into historical sources, religious writings and material culture. The Digital Humanities (DH) explore, edit and analyze these. The annual theme presents interdisciplinary research from the Cluster of Excellence in workshop reports and webquests, lectures, and film and discussion evenings, as well as bringing researchers into dialogue with religious groups and the general public. More

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Religious dynamics

In the third annual theme of the Cluster of Excellence “Religion and Politics”, public lectures, panels and discussion evenings, film screenings, and readings by contemporary authors will focus on religious dynamics from antiquity to the present day. Discussion will focus on how religious dynamics are set in motion, and how religions initiate, accelerate, and promote – but also inhibit – social change. The annual theme takes up ideas from current interdisciplinary work at the Cluster of Excellence, and uses examples to discuss this work. More

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The second annual theme “Tradition(s)” of the Cluster of Excellence examines how societies and religions deal with traditions. How do traditions come into being, how are they passed on, changed, and used in the interests of power? The 2021/22 annual programme will see Cluster members and guests from the academic world and art use case studies ranging from antiquity to the present day to discuss the emergence, transmission and transformation of traditions in, for example, literature, law and religion. More

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Belonging and Demarcation

The first annual theme of the Cluster of Excellence “Religion and Politics” is entitled “Belonging and Demarcation. Dynamics of social formation”. Its programme 2020/21 addresses the question of how different social groups live together in plural societies, how membership of groups and ideas of identity emerge, and how conflicts are regulated and social balance achieved. Participating in the various events and media formats will be not only Cluster members drawn from many disciplines and research projects, but also guests from other research institutions and from the political domain. Involved are disciplines such as sociology, law, history and political science, as well as psychology, philosophy, theology and anthropology. Read more