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Other titles in the New Studies in European History series:
Catholic Revival in the Age of the Baroque (New Studies in European History)by Marc R. Forster
Synopses & Reviews
This book is a study of Catholic reform, popular Catholicism and the development of confessional identity in southwest Germany. Based on extensive archival study, it argues that Catholic confessional identity developed primarily from the identification of villagers and townspeople with the practices of Baroque Catholicism - particularly pilgrimages, processions, confraternities and the Mass. Thus the book is in part a critique of the confessionalization thesis which dominates scholarship in this field. The book is not however focused narrowly on the concerns of German historians. An analysis of popular religious practice and of the relationship between parishioners and the clergy in villages and small towns allows for a broader understanding of popular Catholicism, especially in the period after 1650. Local Baroque Catholicism was ultimately a successful convergence of popular and elite, lay and clerical elements, which led to an increasingly elaborate religious style.
A study of 'Catholic identity' in southwest Germany in the two centuries after the Reformation.
This book seeks to explain the origins of the Catholic identity of the population of southwest Germany between 1550 and 1750. Many studies of this subject credit rulers and church leaders with creating and enforcing religious identity in Germany from above. In contrast, this study argues that there were important local and religious reasons why people came to consider themselves loyal Catholics; and in order to understand the origins of Catholic identity, it examines the nature of Baroque Catholicism--including the significance of pilgrimages, processions, confraternities, and other religious ceremonies.
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