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Studies on the Christian Interpretation of pre-Christian Cults and Beliefs in the Middle Ages
In this volume, Stanisław Rosik focuses on the meaning and significance of Old Slavic religion as presented in three German chronicles (the works of Thietmar of Merseburg, Adam of Bremen, Helmold of Bosau) written during the time of the Christianization of the Western Slavs. The source analyses show the ways the chroniclers understood, explained and represented pre-Christian beliefs and cults, which were interpreted as elements of a foreign, “barbarian”, culture and were evaluated from the perspective of Church doctrine. In this study, individual features of the three authors are discussed– including the issue of the credibility of their information on Old Slavic religion– and broader conclusions on medieval thought are also presented.
Transformations of Germanic Neopaganism
Norse Revival offers a thorough investigation of Germanic Neopaganism (Asatru) through an international and comprehensive historical perspective. It traces Germanic Neopaganism’s genesis in German ultra-nationalist and occultist movements around 1900. Based on ethnographic research of contemporary groups in Germany, Scandinavia and North America, the book examines this alternative Neopagan religion’s transformations towards respectability and mainstream thought after the 1970s. It asks which regressive and progressive elements of a National Romantic discourse on Norse myth have shaped Germanic Neopaganism. It demonstrates how these ambiguous ideas about Nordic myth permeate general discourses on race, religion, gender, sexuality, and aesthetics. Ultimately, Norse Revival raises the question whether Norse mythology can be freed from its reactionary ideological baggage.