The Great Awakening: Reviving Faith and Politics in a Post–Religious Right America

In the early 1990s, I passed an evening in the home of a young couple in Northern Ireland in which we traded cultural references. During our spirited exchange on the thinkers, music and film that had formed our understanding of life and how to live it, we discovered that we had the Bruces Springsteen and Cockburn in common, and Bob Dylan permeated everything. To their amazement, I noted that I’d only found my way to Martin Luther King Jr. thanks to Ireland’s own U2. They liked REM’s “Man on the Moon” but were completely unaware of the oddly prophetic witness of the song’s protagonist, Andy Kaufman. I shared my knowledge proudly and at length. As the back-and-forth continued, the husband made his way over to a bookshelf and returned with a knowing smile. He handed me a book by a hero of his whom he was sure I knew all about.

 

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