This is it. The beginning. The first entry I write in this blog, that will deal with general musings, problems, experiences and findings (however preliminary) concerning my PhD thesis.
Just so you know whom you are dealing with:
My name is Simone and I live in Heidelberg, Germany. I have a Master degree in Religious and Japanese Studies and together with many other scholars from a variety of disciplines and theoretical and methodical backgrounds I am currently involved in a so called “Collaborative Research Center” (in German “Sonderforschungsbereich“) at the University of Heidelberg, dealing with ritual. To be precise, it´s about the “Dynamics of Ritual“, due to the fact that in modern Ritual Theory, ritual is no more perceived as static and repetitive action but as highly flexible and dynamic procedure. I´m sure, I´ll come back to the topic of ritual from time to time in this blog.
The sub-project I´m working on is positioned at the Institute for Religious Studies where I am researching religion(s) in Cyberspace: “Between Online-Religion and Religion-Online. Constellations of Ritual Transfers within the Medium Internet“.
My PhD thesis deals with rituals (many of which can be found online) of the so called “Emerging Church” movement that has started approx. around the 1980s and spread mainly in Anglo-Saxon countries. In the last 2 years or so, groups are also emerging in Germany. So far, I have mostly read about these groups - for once in the many weblogs by its members. Hopefully, I will (maybe even by means of this blog?!) be able to get into direct face-to-face contact with groups and members belonging to the “Emerging Church” scene soon …
And in case you´ve wondered: The banner of this blog shows my “Second Life” research avatar Hana Undertone in a praying pose at the abbey “Our Lady of Second Life” (landmark: Insula Maris 176,138,36). - Due to the fact, that a second research project I´m involved deals with rituals in virtual worlds, where “Second Life” plays an important role as you will know … Both projects have a connection to Christianity and ritual, so I thought, the banner fitted quite well.
Oh yes — even though I am planning to write my PhD thesis in English I´m not a native speaker. So please try to overlook my sometimes rather funny English …
April 29th, 2007