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Religious pluralism has characterized America almost from its seventeenth-century inception, but the past half century or so has witnessed wholesale changes in the religious landscape, including a proliferation of new spiritualities, the emergence of widespread adherence to ''Asian'' traditions, and an evangelical Christian resurgence. These recent phenomena--important in themselves as indices of cultural change--are also both causes and contributions to one of the most remarked-upon and seemingly anomalous characteristics of the modern United States: its widespread religiosity. Compared to its role in the world's other leading powers, religion in the United States is deeply woven into the fabric of civil and cultural life. At the same time, religion has, from the 1600s on, never meant a single denominational or confessional tradition, and the variety of American religious experience has only become more diverse over the past fifty years. Gods in America brings together leading scholars from a variety of disciplines to explain the historical roots of these phenomena and assess their impact on modern American society.
Charles L. Cohen is Professor of History and Religious Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Ronald L. Numbers is Hilldale Professor of the History of Science and Medicine at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Table of Contents
Foreword - Martin Marty
Introduction - Charles L. Cohen and Ronald Numbers
Part One: Overviews Chapter One: Religious Pluralism in Religious Studies - Amanda Porterfield Chapter Two: Religious Pluralism in Modern America: A Sociological Overview - John H. Evans Chapter Three: Worlds in Space: American Religious Pluralism in Geographic Perspective - Bret E. Carroll
Part Two: Protestantism, Catholicism, and Judaism Chapter Four: Evangelicalism and Religious Pluralism in Contemporary America: Diversity Without, Diversity Within, and Maintaining the Borders - William Vance Trollinger, Jr. Chapter Five: Pluralism: Notes on the American Catholic Experience - Scott Appleby Chapter Six: Religious Pluralism in American Judaism - Deborah Dash Moore
Part Three: Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism Chapter Seven: Muslims and American Religious Pluralism - Yvonne Yazbeck Haddad Chapter Eight: Buddhism, Art, and Transcultural Collage: Toward a Cultural History of Buddhism in the United States, 1945-2000 - Thomas A. Tweed Chapter Nine: Beyond Pluralism: Global Gurus and the Third Stream of American Religiosity - Joanne Punzo Waghorne
Part Four: Impact of Religious Pluralism: I Chapter Ten: The Impact of Religious Pluralism on American Women - R. Marie Griffith Chapter Eleven: Popular Religion and Pluralism, or, Will Harry Potter Be Left Behind? - Peter W. Williams Chapter Twelve: ''Finding Light through Muddy Waters'': African American Religious Pluralism - Stephanie Y. Mitchem
Part Five: Impact of Religious Pluralism: II Chapter Thirteen: From Consensus to Struggle: Pluralism and the Body Politic in Contemporary America - Charles H. Lippy Chapter Fourteen: Piety, International Politics, and Religious Pluralism in the American Experience - Paul Boyer Chapter Fifteen: ''Courting Anarchy''?: Religious Pluralism and the Law - Shawn Peters