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Reformation of the SensesThe Paradox of Religious Belief and Practice in Germany$
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Jacob M Baum

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780252042195

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252042195.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction
Source:
Reformation of the Senses
Author(s):

Jacob M. Baum

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252042195.003.0001

This chapter introduces the narrative of de-sensualization promoted by early German Protestants, and briefly outlines its persistence in modern academic and popular discourse. It then addresses recent attempts to deal with the senses in religion among historians of early modern Europe and the German Reformation specifically, showing how the scholarship has enriched our understanding of the relationship between religious changes and sensory culture in this period, but has tended to focus primarily on vision and hearing and has often ignored some of the political, economic, and social power dynamics that often complicated the place of the senses in religious belief and practice. Thereafter, it outlines the major arguments of the study, its scope and methodology, and previews each of the body chapters.

Keywords:   Religion, Senses, de-sensualization, Protestantism, Reformation, late medieval church, belief, practice, worship, ritual, historiography

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