american religion

Books

The Damnation of Theron Ware, by Harold Frederic

A book I like to teach

The Damnation of Theron Ware, by Harold Frederic (1896), is the fictional tale of a sheltered Methodist minister who is suddenly bombarded with new theories of biblical criticism, exposure to Irish Catholic practices, and the allure of emerging ideals of the “modern woman”—all of which shake his religious foundation.

Books

Not religious, not spiritual

Publishers see SBNRs as a key market, while preachers either court them or put them down. As for Nancy Ammerman, she isn’t sure SBNRs exist.

Books

Belief without Borders, by Linda A. Mercadante

Spring books

Linda A. Mercadante’s study counters those who suggest that the rise of the religiously unaffiliated is tantamount to secularization.

Books

Religion in decline?

Readers familiar with Ross Douthat's column might expect his new book to be moderately conservative and carefully nuanced. It is neither.

Books

The Columbia Guide to Religion in American History, edited by Paul Harvey and Edward J. Blum

Spring books

There are probably few reference books that vacationers will drag down to the beach this summer. And though I make a living in academia, there aren’t many works of reference that I want to read from cover to cover. I love history because I love stories, storytelling and engrossing narratives—not because I’m taken with the facts, figures and dates that populate reference books.

Features

Crunching the numbers

The Census Bureau avoids collecting data about religion. So most of what we know is based on what people reveal to independent researchers.