Download Bible-Carrying Christians: Conservative Protestants and by David Harrington Watt PDF

By David Harrington Watt

Within the usa, there are millions of Protestant church buildings whose participants habitually hold their Bibles with them. those churches--often known as "evangelical" or "fundamentalist"--play a very important function in shaping American society. during this e-book, David Watt attracts on years of fieldwork to provide a sublime reinterpretation of ways that conservative Protestants impact American politics and tradition. on the middle of the booklet is a sympathetic, yet faraway from uncritical, research of these sorts of social energy which are assumed to be average between Bible-carrying Christians. whereas outsiders frequently presuppose that evangelical Christians take without any consideration the authority of yes associations (among them the yankee nation, organisations, ministers, males, and heterosexuals), Watt argues that the truth is much extra complicated. this can be a concise and vigorous publication that sheds new mild at the method that Bible-carrying Christians impact the best way that folks in the United States think--and steer clear of thinking--about social strength.

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Sample text

Jane Thomas, one of the members of Oak Grove interviewed by my colleague Pam Hayden, said that although she believed that the Bible stated that homosexuality was wrong and that she herself felt “uncomfortable” around lesbians, she also believed that homosexuals should not be condemned for their sexual orientation. It was not, she said, something that they had chosen for themselves, so it was inappropriate for Oak Grove Church 43 Christians to condemn them. She herself talked about homosexuality and about related issues in ways that led Hayden to conclude that she was a “compassionate” person, a person who was extremely reluctant to judge others harshly.

11 Academics often pictured these churches as militant supporters of the interests of the American state. 12 Collectively, these paraphrases and quotations give us a sense of the general contours of an important and oft-told story about Biblecarrying Christians—the relationship between their churches and social power. This book is largely devoted to exploring the ways in which the narrative does and does not match what I saw and heard while doing my fieldwork. This story (the one I am about to sketch) is extremely influential within some of the academic circles in which I move.

The leaders of Oak Grove have responded to these pressures by “downsizing” the church. They have also responded—from time to time, at least—by denouncing those members of the church who do not give the church one-tenth of all their income. ” Oak Grove Church 39  ,   I did not meet Thomas Stuart until my fieldwork was well underway. I myself have never been a member of a congregation associated with the New Christian Right, nor have I ever had much contact with such congregations, which do not get a lot of first-rate coverage in the newspapers I have read since coming to Philadelphia.

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