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Between Menschlichkeit And Missionsbefehl: God, Work, And World Among Christians In Saxony

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Chapter Summary

This chapter looks at how Christians from various denominations narrate their experiences in education and their professional lives in the GDR, and how they position themselves in relation to religion in their narratives. As professing Christians, the interviewees were faced with disadvantages in education and their professional lives. This raises the question of how private and public dimensions of religion are experienced today, and to what extent life experience in GDR remains relevant in understanding articulations of God, work, and the world. Humane, or menschlich, was a word that often recurred in the interviews, especially in the interviews with Catholics. A similar pattern can be observed among Protestant interviewees, who for the most part came from strict religious communities. What makes these communities particularly interesting is that they explicitly demand from their members that they publicly proclaim their faith (Missionsbefehl), placing in question any strict division between public and private.

Keywords: Christians; education; German Democratic Republic (GDR); Germany; God; Menschlichkeit; Missionsbefehl; professional lives; religion



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