Religious Institutes in Western Europe in the 19th and 20th Centuries

Historiography, Research and Legal Position

Jan De Maeyer (Editor), Sofie Leplae (Editor), Joachim Schmiedl (Editor),

Series: KADOC-Studies on Religion, Culture and Society 2

Category: History, History 1800-present, Religion

Language: English

ISBN: 9789058674029

Publication date: September 21, 2004

€27.00 (including 6% VAT)

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Number of pages: 381

Size: 235 x 175 x 20 mm

Stock item: 46153

Standard delivery time for print books:

For Belgium: 5 to 8 working days

For EU: 2 to 3 weeks

For other countries: 4 to 5 weeks


In the 19th century, religious institutes (orders and congregations) underwent an unprecedented revival. As partners in a large-scale religious modernisation movement, they were welcomed by the Roman Catholic Church in its pursuit of a new role in society (especially in the educational and health-care sectors). At the same time, the Church also deemed it necessary to keep their spectacular growth in check.

Until the 1960s religious institutes played an important role both in society at large as well as within the church (for example, at the level of the missions, liturgy and art). Yet, relatively little research has been done on their development either in ecclesiastical or in broad cultural history. As a basis for further study, The European Forum on the History of Religious Insitutes in the 19th and 20th Centuries offers this study of the historiography of religious institutes and of their position in civil and canon law.

Jan De Maeyer, Sofie Leplae, Joachim Schmiedl

Part I
Historiography and Research

The Historiography of Male Orders and Congregations in Belgium. A Status Quaestionis
Jan Art

Les instituts féminins en Belgique. Bilan et perspectives de recherche
Paul Wynants

Les publications françaises relatives à l’histoire des congrégations religieuses
Daniel Moulinet

An Assessment of the Histories of Religious Communities in Germany
Joachim Schmiedl

Traditional Religious Orders in Germany. A Research Report
Peter Häger

A Survey of Research and Writing about Roman Catholic Women’s Congregations in Great Britain and Ireland (1800-1950)
Susan O’Brien

L’état de la recherche sur les congrégations religieuses en Italie
Nicola Raponi

A World Apart? Religious Orders and Congregations in the Netherlands
Jan Roes and Jans de Valk

Research on Religious Institutes in Switzerland
Franziska Metzger

Part II
The Legal Position of Religious Institutes

Les associations religieuses en Belgique pendant le 19e siècle
Fred Stevens

La législation relative aux congrégations relgieuses en France
Daniel Moulinet

The Social, Cultural and Legal Conditions for the Foundation of Relgiious Orders and Congregations in Germany
Joachim Schmiedl

The Laws of Suppression in Italy. Characteristics and Effects
Alessandro Colombo

“Should it happen that God should permit…” The Political and Legal Position of Orders and Congregations in the Netherlands
Joos van Vugt

The Legal Situation of Religious Institutes in Switzerland. Conflicts about Social and Cultural Modernisation and Discourses about National Hegemony
Franziska Metzger

Index of names
Index of religious institutes
Notes on Contributors

Jan De Maeyer

Jan De Maeyer is professor emeritus of contemporary church history at KU Leuven and honorary director of KADOC-KU Leuven. His research focuses on political and social Catholicism, material Christianity, and the development of religious institutions and congregations.

Sofie Leplae

Joachim Schmiedl

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