Religion Past and Present

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Third World Theology
(977 words)

[German Version]

I. Terminology

The expression Third World was coined in 1952 by the French demographer Alfred Sauvy; using the third estate as an analogy, he spoke of an “exploited and scorned world” that was seeking recognition and dignity. Applied originally to countries steering a course of nonalignment between the West (the First World) and East (the Second World), it eventually came to refer more generally to the poor (unde…

Cite this page
Collet, Giancarlo, “Third World Theology”, 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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