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Michael Stausberg – Religious Studies in Germany: Institutional Frameworks and Constraints

In Germany the distinction between theology and Religionswissenschaft remains firmly in place. This article compares the institutional context of both disciplines. A related development is the recent creation of chairs and programs of Islamic theology. While Christian theology is shielded by constitutional and legal privileges and is far bigger than Religionswissenschaft, the latter has benefited from new initiatives in educational policy; successful new centres and projects were established, the most prominent of which focus on topics at the intersection with sociology. This growth, however, risks not being sustainable, given some peculiarities of the German academic system, in particular its hierarchical, professor-focused structure. The article also discusses the international dimension of German Religionswissenschaft.



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