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12: Understanding fundamentalism: An interdisciplinary analysis of “Strong Religion”

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Hauptschule
Seminar / Seminar
english language

“Pray during the night and be persistent in asking God to give you victory, control and conquest”, Mohamed Atta, one of the terrorists of September 11, 2001, wrote down before the attack on the World Trade Center Towers. Since 9/11 fundamentalism has been perceived by many mainly in its Islamic expression. This overlooks the fact that “de-secularization” (Peter L. Berger) and the rise of “strong religion” are almost universal phenomena that significantly predate the 9/11 attacks. Funda-mentalist movements can be found in all of the world’s major religions: Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sikhism. Moreover, the term “fundamen-talism” is also used to describe absolutist tendencies in non-religious contexts.

This seminar is intended to acquaint students with theoretical and conceptual think-ing about fundamentalism and “strong religion”, to widen historical, psychological and sociological perspectives on these issues, and to illuminate a broad array of ques-tions and dynamics relating to the complex interplay of religion, culture and society. Some of the questions that will be addressed are: What are the social and cultural characteristics of “fundamentalism” and “strong religion”? What are the differences between religious “traditionalism”/”conservatism” and religious “fundamentalism”? Why have forms of religious fundamentalism grown globally? What are viable responses to these developments?

Speakers

Professor of Religious Studies, School of Theology and Religious Studies, The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. Chair
Associate Professor for Ethics and Catholic Social Thought, School of Catholic Theology, University of Graz Chair

Ph.D. William D. DINGES

Professor of Religious Studies, School of Theology and Religious Studies, The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.

1969 BA in History, Fort Hays State University
1974 MA in History, Emporia State University
1976-1981 Teaching Assistant, Western Civilization Program, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas
1977-1981 Adjunct Faculty, Sociology Department, Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas
1981-1982 Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas
1982-1983 Assistant Professor, Philosophy and Religious Studies Department, Ithaca College, Ithaca, New York
1983 Ph.D. in American Studies, University of Kansas
since 1983 School of Theology and Religious Studies, the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., Ordinary Professor (2006)
1984-1985 Adjunct Faculty, University of Maryland, University College
since 1993 Fellow, Life Cycle Institute, Center for the Study of Religion and Culture, The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.
1999 Smithsonian Institute, Smithsonian Associates Program, Campus on the Mall, Washington, D.C.

Mag. Dr. Kurt REMELE

Associate Professor for Ethics and Catholic Social Thought, School of Catholic Theology, University of Graz

1984-1990 Assistant Professor, Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany
1990-1992 Fellow at the Catholic College "Kommende" in Dortmund, Germany
1992-2001 Assistant Professor, University of Graz
 Visiting Scholar at Campion Hall, University of Oxford (1996), Fulbright Scholar at The Catholic University of America (2003), Visiting Professor at the University of Minnesota (2007)
since 2001 Associate Professor, University of Graz

Seminar Week

show timetable

14.08.2008

17:00 - 17:30Opening of the European Forum Alpbach 2008Plenary
17:30 - 19:00Opening speechesPlenary
19:00 - 20:30Presentation of the seminarsPlenary
20:30 - 23:00Opening receptionSocial

14.08.-21.08.2008

Seminar 01: Climate change and what we need to do about itSeminar
Seminar 02: Utopias and alternative (visions of) worldsSeminar
Seminar 03: Wirtschaftsforschung und WirtschaftspolitikSeminar
Seminar 04: Geschichtliche Situationsdeutungen und historische EntscheidungenSeminar
Seminar 05: A European people? Perception and formation of European citizensSeminar
Seminar 06: Ethics and biomedicine: Analysis of decisions and value judgementsSeminar
Seminar 07: Security policy becoming a European issueSeminar

14.08.-20.08.2008

Seminar 08: Who is in control? How the brain controls our thoughts and actionsSeminar
Seminar 09: PredictabilitySeminar
Seminar 10: Public opinion, opinion research and political decision-makingSeminar
Seminar 11: Transatlantic relationsSeminar
Seminar 12: Understanding fundamentalism: An interdisciplinary analysis of "Strong Religion"Seminar
Seminar 13: "Global Constitutional Network" - Limits and Possibilities of (Inter-)national JurisdictionsSeminar
Seminar 14: Art and perceptionSeminar

15.08.2008

20:30 - 21:30Special Lecture: Europe - Strategic decisions for the continentPlenary

16.08.2008

17:30 - 19:00Plenary session: Climate change and PredictabilityPlenary

18.08.2008

19:00 - 20:30Plenary session: 40 years after the Prague SpringPlenary

19.08.2008

17:30 - 19:00Plenary session: What has remained of 1968?Plenary