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The "Distant Child" – Religious Engagement and the Globalization of Family, 1840–1930

Organized aid and the willingness to make sacrifices for the wellbeing of others was usually focused on defined groups of people. The research project by Katharina Stornig is based on the observation that, from the mid-nineteenth century, Christian associations in Germany increasingly tried to engender solidarity among their supporters towards geographically distant people in Asia and Africa. The project examines this Christian commitment towards "distant children" based on three transnational associations of different confessions (Werk der Heiligen Kindheit, Norddeutsche Mission and St.‐Petrus‐Claver Sodalität). The project studies the historical developments which preceded the international children’s relief organizations of the twentieth century, examines the importance of the global connections of Christian associations in the history of transnational aid, and identifies the special role that children, constructions of childhood and parent-child relationships played in this context.