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Animism
(630 words)

Georg Ernst Stahl (1660–1734), a German physician and chemist who established the phlogiston theory, used the term “animism” from the psychology of the early modern period, wanting as a doctor to give scientific form to the classical identification of the life principle and the soul. The English anthropologist Edward Burnett Tylor (1832–1917) then took it over from Stahl, proposing it in a lecture to the Royal Asiatic Society in London in 1867 as a substitute for the term “fetishism” to denote more clearly “the state of mind which sees in all nature the action of animated…

Cite this page
Colpe, Carsten, “Animism”, in: Encyclopedia of Christianity Online. Consulted online on 16 June 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2211-2685_eco_A330>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004169678, 20080512



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