Theology and Dehumanization
In this posthumous volume Jill Anne Kowalik analyzes pathological grief in 17th and 18th-century Germany. Early chapters outline the methodological prerequisites and the main theoretical underpinnings for her multidisciplinary study of mentality and give an overview of the theories and practices of consolation in the Western tradition. She traces the origins of pathological grief to the trauma of the Thirty Years War, and analyzes mourning practices as evidenced by funeral sermons for their punitive theological content. Rather than helping, these practices actually intensified the trauma of loss. The second part of the volume addresses the work of German writers such as Moritz, Nietzsche, Freud, and Goethe for their psychologically acute depiction of the effects of pathological mourning.