Religion, Society, and World Relations

Zeichnung zweier Köpfe im virtuellen Raum

The investigation of self- and transcendental relationships, of the relationship between community and individual and of ritual communication and its meaning, as well as the reflection on social-institutional orders, on processes of social change, on value and meaning concepts, combine the question of "religion", "society" and "world relationship". This mutual interrelation of individual actors, social structures and cross-border horizons gives the research in this focus area its profile. In concrete intra- as well as interdisciplinary projects – the profile is formed here by the association "Attraction, Repulsion, Indifference – A Culture-Comparative Analysis of World Relations" – researchers in this field are dedicated to historical and contemporary phenomena in different cultural and social contexts. All faculties and the Max Weber Kolleg as well as the Willy Brandt School of Public Policy and various junior university colleges such as the Center for Political Practices and Orders and the Theological Research Centre are involved in the projects. There has long been close cooperation between the actors in the current focus area in research and teaching, including joint conferences and workshops, lecture series and publications, and interdisciplinary seminars. The research is characterized by a special interest in the utilization of historical research results for questions of religion, culture and society of the present, whereby current social debates are taken up again and again and intensive scientific communication is carried out.

Projects of the research focus (German only)


Since 2015, the Research Center "Dynamics of Ritual Practices in Judaism in Pluralistic Contexts from Antiquity to the Present" at the University of Erfurt has given a home to research into Jewish religious practices and related discourses, which…

According to medieval sources, small silver keys were worn by Jewish women on Shabbat. Such a key is also contained in the unique medieval treasure found in Erfurt in 1998, which was once buried by a Jewish merchant. It is one of the most unusual…

Community and individual experiences in the fields of art and religion are often experienced and described as "unspeakable", as immediate and simultaneous, as fluctuating and fleeting. They transcend the order of space and time - and yet are…

The Max-Weber-Kolleg of the University of Erfurt awarded an honorary doctorate to Prof. Dr. Corinne Bonnet from the University of Toulouse during its academic anniversary celebration on January, 13.


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