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The Cultural Values of Europe$
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Hans Joas and Klaus Wiegandt

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781846311383

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846315800

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 11 May 2021

The Axial Age in World History

The Axial Age in World History

(p.22) 1 The Axial Age in World History
The Cultural Values of Europe

Shmuel N. Eisenstadt

Liverpool University Press

This chapter analyses the characteristics of the ‘axial civilizations’ or those civilizations that crystallized during the time from 500 bc to the advent of Islam in the seventh century ad. It then outlines some of the major similarities and differences between them and how they influenced or shaped the common characteristics of modernity. The chapter also discusses the constitution of collective identities and constellations of power in axial-age civilizations. Examples are the crystallization of Jewish identity in the Second Temple and in exilic times, the Iconoclasts in the Byzantine Empire, the great divide between Sunni and Shiite Islam, and Protestantism in Europe.

Keywords:   axial civilizations, Islam, modernity, collective identities, power, axial-age civilizations, Jewish identity, Iconoclasts, Byzantine Empire, Sunni

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