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Liturgy and Violence in Christianity—a Case Study

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Religious rituals and worship services within the context of violence and war are the topic of this article. It investigates the role of different dimensions of such liturgies and their encouragement and legitimization, but also their delegitimization of war. The textual example, on which this article is based, is a small Catholic prayer book for soldiers from World War I. The thesis is that liturgy and forms of piety have a very formative character by means of their emotionality and associations, but also through corporeity, repetition, etc. Liturgy and piety can have a great but very different impact on the communication of war and violence. The article focuses on some of the central prayers and other texts from this prayer book as concrete examples for the article's argument.


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