Herman Selderhuis (Apeldoorn, Netherlands)
Confessional Cultures and Normative Competitions
Calvinism developed a specific theological and confessional position, both on the grounds of Luther’s theology and in a two-fronted polemic demarcation to Lutheranism and Tridentine Catholicism. This position was expressed in a specific spirituality and ethics and in a unique attitude towards culture, state and society. Due to its international character, the Calvinistic theological position and its impact spread around the world and resulted in a still visible transnational uniformity. In this contribution, first the development and the term of Calvinism will be explained. In a second part, the cultural impact of Calvinism will be described. Thirdly, a short overview concerning Calvinism’s internationality and the characteristics of Calvinists in contrast to Lutherans and Catholics will be offered. Last of all, the interior plurality of Calvinism will be described, and to what extent this plurality, because of its theological basis, fits the ambiguous term ›competition‹.