Author: urbrel

Urban Exclusions (City Walk 6)

— Sara Keller Diversity is one of the distinctive features of urbanity as we define it in our research group (Rau and Rüpke 2020). The plural character of urban life acts as a stimulating force enabling large-scale endeavours and remarkable achievements. Prehistoric monumental architectural projects such as Göbekli Tepe and…

Urban and Rural Plague Prevention: Johann Georg Schiebel’s “Plague Pharmacy” (1680)

— Martin Christ It is not always easy to find “urbanity” in early modern sources. Many times, historians have to reconstruct what an author considered to be features of urbanity, by reading carefully and between the lines. This is especially the case because words, such as “urbanity” or “rurality” do…

Fuzziness and Religious Syncretism in Upper Lusatia’s Reformation

In this guest post, Jaap Geraerts, post-doctoral researcher at the Institute for European History, Mainz, reviews Biographies of a Reformation. Religious Change and Confessional Coexistence in Upper Lusatia, 1520-1635 (OUP, 2021) by Martin Christ. The book was finished in the framework of the KFG “Religion and Urbanity: Reciprocal Formations”. In…

Yatrā and Darśan: Pilgrimage to see in Hindu Religion

— Meera Ishwar Dass Ujjain in the state of Madhya Pradesh, India, was documented for a project that was funded by the Government of India under their Urban Renewal Mission scheme. The project was done by the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage, Regional Chapter Bhopal of which…

Urban Religion in the Metropolis Tokyo and in Kyoto

— Jörg Rüpke Religious practices, religious spaces, and religious times are part of urban diversity in today’s towns and cities. A 40-page picture book, grown out of a cooperation with Japanese universities in the framework of research on “Religion and Urbanity”, documents some impressions of that from visits to Tokyo…

Religion and Urbanity in Hell? A Satirical Description of London from 1729

— Martin Christ When we think of London today, we might think of the many opportunities this provides. A global and cosmopolitan metropolis, that has much to offer to people from all walks of life: tourists come to marvel at Big Ben or Buckingham Palace, people looking for work relocate…

Jerusalem Or: When Religion Shakes Urbanity

An(other) Interview with Nimrod Luz When I contacted Nimrod Luz for this interview the ceasefire between Hamas and Israel had come into force since two days. I thought time was ripe for profiting from his presence as a fellow at the Max Weber Centre in Erfurt and asking for his…

Pilgrimage as Landscapes of Death: Infrastructures, Stampede and Ethnocracy. Ruminations in the aftermath of the Meron catastrophe in Israel

On April 30, 2021 the annual festival (Hebrew: Hillula) for the Qabbala sage Rabbi Shimon Bar Yohai (acronym: Rashbi) took place in its traditional location on top of Mt. Meron. Over 100,000 people, most of them male Orthodox Jews, gathered around the traditional location of the sage’s burial plot to…

The Corona Goddess

— Sara Keller Fig. 1. Corona Mātā, depiction circulating on Indian social medias since 2020 (‘Maa Bharati On Coronavirus’ Sandhya Kumari/Gallerist.in, CC BY-SA). In pandemic times, some people call on pharmaceutical labs to rapidly defeat the virus, others directly address the disease. In India, informal devotional practices for a female…

The Corona Goddess

— Sara Keller Fig. 1. Corona Mātā, depiction circulating on Indian social medias since 2020 (‘Maa Bharati On Coronavirus’ Sandhya Kumari/Gallerist.in, CC BY-SA). In pandemic times, some people call on pharmaceutical labs to rapidly defeat the virus, others directly address the disease. In India, informal devotional practices for a female…

From Mining Site to Mining City: the Case of Mes Aynak, Afghanistan

— Elisa Iori If I asked you to describe a mining city, the picture you will paint would be probably that of a dusty, smoky, ugly and polluted city dominated by a somehow melancholic atmosphere due to both the poor and dangerous conditions of the mining workers and the predictability…

Lecture Series: Religion and Urbanity in Time and Space

The KFG “Religion and Urbanity: Reciprocal Formations” organized a lecture series at the university of Erfurt in the winter semester 2020/21 under the title “Religion and Urbanity in Time and Space”. You can now watch the lectures here. Religion and urbanity are globally widespread and long-established strategies for dealing with…

Framing Games in Sacred Spaces: a Case Study from North-West India

In one of the Hindu myths, Shiva plays dice with his consort Parvati and loses miserably. The oldest of the Pandavas brothers in the Mahābhārata even loses wife, family and kingdom all at once because of a rigged dice game. The theme of the cosmos as a playground in which…

Religious Women, Sex, and the City. The Depiction of Religious Women in Popular Media

In 2019 The Guardian published an article with the title „Archive shows medieval nun faked her own death to escape convent“. Initially, I was surprised to find a newspaper article about medieval nuns. My surprise waned when I read that the nun escaped the convent to have sex or „to…

„The Travels Beyond the Three Seas“

Alam Muzaffar; Sanjay Subrahmanyam, Indo-Persian Travels in the Age of Discoveries, 1400-1800, [Cambridge University Press] 2007, p. 84. European travelers in India before the circumnavigation of the Cape of Good Hope by Vasco da Gama in 1498 are a rare sight, but they do exist. While most pilgrims just claimed…

Conversion and Urbanity in Early Modern Germany (Part 1)

In September 1652, Petrus Overier came to Leipzig. His life had been an itinerant one and he had been to many places in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation, as Germany was called at that time. He had been in Limburg, Bamberg, Fulda and many other places. In…
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