Journal Article

The Change in Religion and Church in Eastern Germany After 1989: A Research Note

Detlef Pollack

in Sociology of Religion

Published on behalf of Association for the Sociology of Religion

Volume 63, issue 3, pages 373-387
Published in print January 2002 | ISSN: 1069-4404
Published online January 2002 | e-ISSN: 1759-8818 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3712475
The Change in Religion and Church in Eastern Germany After 1989: A Research Note

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This research note describes changes in religion and church in Eastern Germany after the demise of state socialism. In order to understand these changes, different theoretical models are examined: the market model, the thesis of individualization, and the theory of secularization. A distinction between different dimensions of religion is used for discussing the applicability of these theoretical models to the processes of religious change in Eastern Germany. After dramatic losses during the time of state socialism, both religion and churches have continued to lose social significance since 1989. Research findings support the secularization thesis as the most appropriate approach for describing these religious changes in Eastern Germany.

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Subjects: Religion ; Sociology of Religion

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