Religion Past and Present

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Deviant Behavior
(411 words)

[German Version]

Human behavioral patterns are influenced by cultural norms, not biologically determined. To this extent there exists in every culture a (broader or narrower, dependent on the culture) range of “normal” behavior and a corresponding way of dealing with behavior that deviates from this norm. Both the determination of what is normal and the way of dealing with deviant behavior are relevant to religion: deities have created or guaranteed the order of life and of the world and they are involved in dealing with deviations.

The treatment of deviations can be roughly divi…

Cite this page
Stolz, Fritz, “Deviant Behavior”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 13 August 2022 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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