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Der Protestantismus und das linksrevolutionäre Pathos
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Der Protestantismus und das linksrevolutionäre Pathos

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Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht
By analysing the World Conference of Churches (WCC) and by using the concept of... mehr
Der Protestantismus und das linksrevolutionäre Pathos
By analysing the World Conference of Churches (WCC) and by using the concept of neo-institutionalism this text tries to answer the question of how ideas of the extreme Left influenced worldwide Protestantism in the 1960s and 1970s. The process of secularization and the closely connected change of values played a crucial role in this respect. The naive belief in progress faded away and self-doubts about the Western social order grew, while socialism as an alternative concept gained attraction. To obtain the image of being up-to date the WCC participated in these developments and took up social myths, such as ‘revolution’ or ‘anti-racism’. Furthermore, ecumenical activists picked up the master narrative of a generally dark ultra-conservative protestant past after which the time had come to take sides with those who are underprivileged and to take action and to revolt against injustice. At the same time state socialist countries explored the propagandistic value of international ecumenism and started supporting it. By accepting new ‘myths’ the WCC neglected its original aims unity and mission and sought to achieve legitimacy in a radically changed world.
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