Series:

Indra Spiecker gen. Döhmann

Der Umgang des Staates mit Information ist von vielschichtigen Konzepten durchdrungen.
Behebung von Marktversagen zur Herstellung einer Marktgängigkeit von (privaten) Informationen ist nur eines der Konzepte. Gewährleistung von Transparenz zur Demokratiesicherung, Information als Entscheidungsgrundlage staatlichen und privaten Handelns, als Instrument der Steuerung oder auch die Herausbildung einer Infrastrukturordnung sind andere Funktionen und Ziele, die staatliche Vorgaben bedienen. Der Staat tritt dabei in verschiedensten Rollen auf und agiert auf der Basis unterschiedlicher Informationskonzepte. Diese Vielfalt offenzulegen und zu systematisieren, kann dazu beitragen, scheinbare Widersprüche aufzudecken und den Umgang mit privaten, öffentlichen, personenbezogenen und sachlichen Informationen besser auszugestalten: z.B. die brennenden Konflikte im Zeitalter von Digitalisierung und Internet zwischen wirtschaftlicher Nutzung von Daten einerseits und den Schutzrechten Privater andererseits.

Series:

Georg Lienbacher

Die Beziehungen des Staates zu seinen politischen Parteien sind komplex und ambivalent.
Staat und politische Parteien bedingen einander. Sie sind einerseits Voraussetzung für die Existenz und die Funktion des jeweils anderen. Andererseits haben sie auch das Potential, die Funktionstüchtigkeit des Staates gemessen an den verfassungsrechtlich vorgesehenen Einrichtungen und Verfahren zu gefährden. Vielfach überlagern sie diese und degradieren verfassungsrechtlich vorgesehene Organe zu Vollstreckern von Entscheidungen, die inhaltlich auf parteipolitischer Ebene getroffen wurden. Am Beispiel Österreichs werden sowohl die gegenseitige Bedingtheit als auch die Spannungsverhältnisse zwischen verfassungsrechtlichen Einrichtungen und deren parteipolitischen Überlagerungen aufgezeigt. Von den unterschiedlichen wissenschaftlichen Betrachtungsweisen wird der juristischen der Vorzug gegeben, wenngleich andere nicht zur Gänze ausgeblendet bleiben. Darüber hinaus werden Überlegungen zur Beseitigung bzw. Begrenzung der aufgezeigten Disfunktionalitäten angestellt.
Ernst Bloch’s thought is located at the intersection of classical German philosophy and historical materialist theory. It has played a major role in materialist thought in the 20th century and continues to influence discussions, especially in continental philosophy, today. Yet, his reception has historically been limited in the Anglophone context by an absence of available translations. Bloch’s self-consciously expressionistic, creative use of language and his allusive, esoteric style go some of the way to explaining this absence. Nevertheless, Bloch is an extremely interesting thinker whose work is sought after by a wide range of scholars, theorists and general readers in the English-speaking world. Against the background of the current revival of speculative philosophy and a burgeoning contemporary interest in historical materialism, the absence of much of his work in English translation represents a significant gap in scholarship and in the publication market. The Bloch Bibliothek seeks to address this requirement by developing a series of critical editions of Bloch’s works translated into English.

Mediterranean Reconfigurations

Intercultural Trade, Commercial Litigation, and Legal Pluralism

The book series Mediterranean Reconfigurations is devoted to the analyses of historical change in the Mediterranean over a long period (15th - 19th centuries), challenging totalizing narratives that “Westernize” Mediterranean history as having led naturally to European domination in the 19th and 20th centuries. In reality, the encounters of Muslim, Jewish, Armenian and Protestant merchants and sailors with legal customs and judicial practices different from their own gave rise to legal and cultural creativity throughout the Mediterranean. Through the prism of commercial litigation, the series thus offers a more accurate and deeper understanding of the practices of intercultural trade, in a context profoundly shaped by legal pluralism and multiple and overlapping spaces of jurisdiction. Comparative case studies offer empirically-based indicators for both regional and more general processes, here called "Mediterranean reconfigurations", e.g. the changing interplay and positioning of individual and institutional actors on different levels in a variety of commercial and legal contexts.

Esther Eidinow

Abstract

This article discusses the challenges facing scholars exploring the nature of belief in ancient Greek religion. While recent scholarship has raised questions about individual religious activities, and work on ritual, the body, and the senses has broadened our methodological palette, the nature and dynamics of generally held “low intensity” beliefs still tend to be described simply as “unquestioned” or “embedded” in society. But examining scholarship on divine personifications suggests that ancient beliefs were — and our perceptions of them are — more complex. This article first explores the example of Tyche (“Chance”), in order to highlight some of the problems that surround the use of the term “belief.” It then turns to the theories of “ideology” of Slavoj Žižek and Robert Pfaller and argues that these can offer provocative insights into the nature and dynamics of ritual and belief in ancient Greek culture.

Arresting Alternatives

Religious Prejudice and Bacchantic Worship in Greek Literature

Marika Rauhala

Abstract

Ancient Greek descriptions of ecstatic and mystic rituals, here broadly labeled as Bacchantic worship, regularly include elements of moral corruption and dissolution of social unity. Suspicions were mostly directed against unofficial cult groups that exploited Dionysiac experiences in secluded settings. As the introduction of copious new cults attests, Greek religion was receptive to external influences. This basic openness, however, was not synonymous with tolerance, and pious respect for all deities did not automatically include their worshippers. This article reconsiders the current view of ancient religious intolerance by regarding these negative stereotypes as expressions of prejudice and by investigating the social dynamics behind them. Prejudices against private Bacchantic groups are regarded as part of the process of buttressing the religious authority of certain elite quarters in situations where they perceive that their position is being threatened by rival claims. It is suggested that both the accentuation and alleviation of prejudice is best understood in relation to the relative stability of the elite and the religious control it exerted.