“American Christianities” (Brekus and Gilpin eds.)

Here’s a wonderful looking book of essays, American Christianities: A History of Dominance & Diversity (UNC Press) edited by historians Catherine A. Brekus and W. Clark Gilpin.  The focus on Christianity’s political dominance (as well as the implications of its diversity on policy and legal issues) seems helpful for law and religion scholars.  The publisher’s description is below.  — MOD

From the founding of the first colonies until the present, the influence of Christianity, as the dominant faith in American society, has extended far beyond church pews into the wider culture. Yet, at the same time, Christians in the United States have disagreed sharply about the meaning of their shared tradition, and, divided by denominational affiliation, race, and ethnicity, they have taken stances on every side of contested public issues from slavery to women’s rights.

This volume of twenty-two original essays, contributed by a group of prominent thinkers in American religious studies, provides a sophisticated understanding of both the diversity and the alliances among Christianities in the United States and the influences that have shaped churches and the nation in reciprocal ways. American Christianities explores this paradoxical dynamic of dominance and diversity that are the true marks of a faith too often perceived as homogeneous and monolithic.

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