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Title: The Self and the Other. Paul Rohrbach's Notes Regarding Middle Eastern Orthodoxy during his Trip to Palestine from 1898 to 1899
Other Titles: الذات والآخر. مذكرات بول روهرباك المتعلقة بالارثوذكسية الوسط الشرقية خلال سفره الى فلسطين بين سنتي 1898 و1899
Authors: Tamcke, Martin
Keywords: The Self
Paul Rohrbach
Middle Eastern Orthodoxy
Issue Date: 2006
Publisher: University of Balamand
Part of: Chronos
Issue: 14
Start page: 57
End page: 65
An indisputable and ambivalent consequence of the European presence in the Middle East is the fact that the European-American missions, whose initial goal was to missionize Muslims, were most effective among orthodox Christians. (Richter 1930:209) But it is equally indisputable that the European-American presence in the region helped make Middle Eastern Christians a driving force for modernization and a crucial catalyst of cultural and political development. (Tamcke 2005: 15-28) The following contribution is an attempt to understand one German author's alarmingly ignorant image of Middle Eastern Orthodoxy. And yet the focus is not on old discourses: the German author's image of Middle Eastern Orthodoxy is offered neither to enrich the Orientalism debate with yet another variation, nor to renew the older discourses about imperialism and colonization or cultural imperialism. (Griinder 1982:363-388, Griinder 1992:345-367, Richter 1997, Benner 2001) Instead, the goal is to better grasp the function and meaning the image of orthodoxy had for the author himself. Starting, of course, with the realization that every interaction and every dialog between members of different cultures and confessions triggers images, which, at the very least, have the potential to serve as an orderly means of comprehension, the source of the image to be discussed here is a German author who was prominent during his lifetime. This author, Paul Rohrbach, did have connections to missionary societies, hut because of his affiliation with modern trends he developed beyond his ecclesiastical-religious milieu and positioned himself as a leading politician in nineteenth and twentieth century Germany. (Mogk 1972) Therefore he was not actually representative of the spiritual world of Germany's Middle East missions (most of which were influenced by revivalism). But he was exemplary of the social structures that supported modernism in Germany, and during its encounters and conflicts with Middle Eastern Christendom.
Open URL: Link to full text
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Chronos

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