American Religious Liberalism

American Religious Liberalism

Edited by Leigh E. Schmidt and Sally M. Promey
Distribution: World
Publication date: 7/9/2012
Format: paper 430 pages, 18 b&w illus.
6 x 9
ISBN: 978-0-253-00209-9
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Description

Religious liberalism in America has often been equated with an ecumenical Protestant establishment. By contrast, American Religious Liberalism draws attention to the broad diversity of liberal cultures that shapes America’s religious movements. The essays gathered here push beyond familiar tropes and boundaries to interrogate religious liberalism’s dense cultural leanings by looking at spirituality in the arts, the politics and piety of religious cosmopolitanism, and the interaction between liberal religion and liberal secularism. Readers will find a kaleidoscopic view of many of the progressive strands of America’s religious past and present in this richly provocative volume.

Author Bio

Leigh E. Schmidt is Edward Mallinckrodt University Professor at Washington University in St. Louis and is affiliated with the Center on Religion and Politics. He is author of Restless Souls: The Making of American Spirituality.

Sally M. Promey is Professor of American Studies, Religion, and Visual Culture at Yale University, where she is also Deputy Director of the Institute of Sacred Music. She is author of
Painting Religion in Public: John Singer Sargent’s “Triumph of Religion” at the Boston Public Library.

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Table of Contents

Foreword
Acknowledgments
Introduction: The Parameters and Problematics of American Religious Liberalism
Leigh E. Schmidt
I. The Spiritual in Art
1. Reading Poetry Religiously: The Walt Whitman Fellowship and Seeker Spirituality

Michael Robertson
2. The Christology of Niceness: Harriet Beecher Stowe, the Jesus Novel, and Sacred Trivialities
Carrie Tirado Bramen
3. Visible Liberalism: Liberal Protestant Taste Evangelism, 1850 and 1950
Sally M. Promey
4. Discovering Imageless Truths: The Bahá’í Pilgrimage of Juliet Thompson, Artist
Christopher G. White
5. Where “Deep Streams Flow, Endlessly Renewing”: Metaphysical Religion and “Cultural Evolution” in the Art of Agnes Pelton
Nathan Rees
II. The Piety and Politics of Liberal Ecumenism
6. “Citizens of All the World’s Temples”: Cosmopolitan Religion at Bell Street Chapel
Emily R. Mace
7. Spiritual Border-Crossings in the U.S. Woman's Rights Movement
Kathi Kern
8. “We Build our Temples for Tomorrow”: Racial Ecumenism and Religions Liberalism in the Harlem Renaissance
Josef Sorett
9. Reading across the Divide of Faith: Liberal Protestant Book Culture and Interfaith Encounters in Print, 1921-1948
Matthew S. Hedstrom
10. The Dominant, the Damned, and the Discs: On the Metaphysical Liberalism of Charles Fort and Its Afterlives
Jeffrey Kripal
11. Liberal Sympathies: Morris Jastrow and the Science of Religion
Kathryn Lofton
12. Jewish Liberalism through Comparative Lenses: Reform Judaism and Its Liberal Christian Counterparts
Yaakov Ariel
III. Pragmatism, Secularism, and Internationalism
13. Each Attitude a Syllable: The Linguistic Turn in William James’s
Varieties of Religious Experience
Lindsay V. Reckson
14. Protestant Pragmatism in China, 1919-1927
Gretchen Boger
15. Demarcating Democracy: Liberal Catholics, Protestants, and the Discourse of Secularism
K. Healan Gaston
16. Religious Liberalism and the Liberal Geopolitics of Religion
Tracy Fessenden
Afterword and Commentary: Religious Liberalism and Ecumenical Self-Interrogation
David A. Hollinger
Contributors
Index
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