Forum I: Religious Denomination.
Rolf Gehrmann & Kevin McQuillan (Eds.): The Impact of Religious Denomination on Mentality and Behavior.
For at least 500 years, differences in denomination have helped shape social life in Europe. How have religious perspectives influ-enced the perception of the other, lifestyles, and living conditions? How do we weigh the influence of religion in relation to other social characteristics – and is religion still relevant in modern Europe? The contributions to this HSR Forum will probe these questions through different approaches and in overviews as well as in special surveys for five European countries, among which one with a Muslim majority. Most of the papers are drawn from Historical Demography, which is able to show, for relatively distant historical periods, how a religious mentality manifests itself in behavior and leads to different life-course scripts. Another article takes a close look at the results of polls, which nowadays allow a more direct access to value systems, in order to learn to what extend they are influenced directly or indirectly by religious traditions. The forum is completed by a cultural-historical contribution based on travel reports.
Forum II: Spatial Dimensions.
Christoph Bernhardt (Ed.): Spatial Dimensions of Governance in 20th Century Political Struggles.
Despite a growing interest within the historical sciences for spatial dimensions of socio-cultural interaction, research has concentrated on some subfields and problems, like theoretical challenges of conceptualizing space, urban history or spatial dimensions of everyday life. In contrast, political issues of institutional change and governance in the course of the 20th century stayed to some extent outside the “spatial turn,” apart from some explorations in the growing field of global history. This HSR Forum discusses spatial dimensions in 20th century political struggles along selected questions taken from various strands of research in different disciplines. These questions ad-dress interactions of political actors in terms of Multilevel Governance and scalar strategies in historical conflicts of the 20th century. The articles discuss cases from different political periods and countries and raise questions like governance in socialism, the role of citizens groups and NGOs like Greenpeace in different political contexts and the relevance of knowledge formation for the re-scaling of political arenas in the EU.