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Absolutism

(646 words)

Author(s): Lehmann, Hartmut
[German Version] From the middle of the 16th century to the last third of the 18th, when absolutism was the dominant form of government in Europe, the term itself was not used. Not until the 1790s, when absolutism was fundamentally challenged by the outbreak of the French Revolution, did people in France begin to use the term “absolutisme”…

Secularization

(7,317 words)

Author(s): Bergunder, Michael | Lehmann, Hartmut | Graf, Friedrich Wilhelm | Mathisen, James A. | de Wall, Heinrich | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies In the 1960s, religious studies began to discuss the continuing decline of religious commitment in Europe intensively. In particular the writings of Bryan Wilson ( Religion in a Secular Society, 1966) and Peter L. Berger ( The Sacred Canopy, 1967), drawing on the ideas of M. Weber, É. Durkheim, and others led to formulation of a so-called theory of secularization, where secularization denotes a natural aspect of the process of modernization, in which the traditional religious legitimation of the world has increasingly lost…