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The production of American religious freedom

Author: Finbarr Curtis
Publisher: New York : New York University Press, [2016]
Series: North American religions.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Americans love religious freedom. Few agree, however, about what they mean by either 'religion' or 'freedom.' Rather than resolve these debates, Finbarr Curtis argues that there is no such thing as religious freedom. Lacking any consistent content, religious freedom is a shifting and malleable rhetoric employed for a variety of purposes. While Americans often think of freedom as the right to be left alone, the free  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Church history
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Finbarr Curtis
ISBN: 9781479882113 1479882119 9781479856763 1479856762
OCLC Number: 926743392
Description: x, 208 pages ; 24 cm.
Contents: You, and you, and you: Charles Grandison Finney and democracy --
I'm not myself to-night. I owe money: Louisa May Alcott and salvation --
Sentiment rules the world: William Jennings Bryan and populism --
The helpless white minority: D.W. Griffith and violence --
The fundamental faith of every true American: Al Smith and loyalty --
Do you hate me? Malcolm X and the truth --
Science in a little box: intelligent design and secularity --
The most sacred of all property: corporations and persons --
You, and you, and you.
Series Title: North American religions.
Responsibility: Finbarr Curtis.

Abstract:

"Americans love religious freedom. Few agree, however, about what they mean by either 'religion' or 'freedom.' Rather than resolve these debates, Finbarr Curtis argues that there is no such thing as religious freedom. Lacking any consistent content, religious freedom is a shifting and malleable rhetoric employed for a variety of purposes. While Americans often think of freedom as the right to be left alone, the free exercise of religion works to produce, challenge, distribute, and regulate different forms of social power. The book traces shifts in the notion of religious freedom in America from The Second Great Awakening, to the fiction of Louisa May Alcott and the films of D.W. Griffith, through William Jennings Bryan and the Scopes Trial, and up to debates over the Tea Party to illuminate how Protestants have imagined individual and national forms of identity. A chapter on Al Smith considers how the first Catholic presidential nominee of a major party challenged Protestant views about the separation of church and state. Moving later in the twentieth century, the book analyzes Malcolm X's more sweeping rejection of Christian freedom in favor of radical forms of revolutionary change. The final chapters examine how contemporary controversies over intelligent design and the claims of corporations to exercise religion are at the forefront of efforts to shift regulatory power away from the state and toward private institutions like families, churches, and corporations. The volume argues that religious freedom is produced within competing visions of governance in a self-governing nation"--Provided by publisher.

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"The Production of American Religious Freedom reads like a collection of meditations on important themes in American religious history that serve as case studies for conceptual problems in the study Read more...

 
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