Intimacy and Exclusion Religious Politics in Pre-revolutionary Baden
In this pathbreaking work, Dagmar Herzog situates the birth of German liberalism in the religious conflicts of the nineteenth century. During the years leading up to the revolutions of 1848, liberal and conservative Germans engaged in a contest over the terms of the Enlightenment legacy and the meaning of Christianity--a contest that grew most intense in the Grand Duchy of Baden, where liberalism first became an influential political movement. Bringing insights drawn from Jewish and women's studies into German history, Herzog demonstrates how profoundly Christianity's problematic relationships to Judaism and to sexuality shaped liberal, conservative, and radical thought in the pre-revolutionary years. In particular, she reveals how often conflicts over the private sphere and the "politics of the personal" determined larger political matters.Herzog documents the unexpected rise of a politically sophisticated religious right led by conservative Catholics, and explores liberals' ensuing eagerness to advance a humanist version of Christianity. Yet she also examines the limitations at the heart of the liberal project, as well as the difficulties encountered by philo-Semitic and feminist radicals as they strove to reconceptualize both classical liberalism and Christianity in order to make room for the claims of Jews and women. The book challenges fundamental assumptions about processes of secularization and religious renewal and about Jewish-Christian relations in German history.