Concepts of Religion and the State: An Application to South-Eastern Europe



This chapter provides an overview of theoretical concepts between church and state, and examines the divergent cases of Slovenia and Macedonia. Slovenia and Macedonia, as relatively small countries of Eastern Europe, represent examples of constantly changing relationships between religious communities, the state, and the population since the initial post-socialist transition two decades ago. A common feature of social change is that religious communities are in search of their role within society and politics. Developments in Slovenia offer insights into the dynamics of the cleavage between traditional religions and new movements of indifference towards religious feelings. In Macedonia, the population is represented by two traditional religions (Christian Orthodoxy and Sunni Islam) that are interrelated with ethnic identity. Thus, following major political intervention, religion became a strong source of identity.


Religious Group Ideal Type Religious Community Religious Organization Muslim Community 
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© Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden GmbH 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for SociologyOtto-von-Guericke Universität MagdeburgMagdeburgGermany

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