By David Harrington Watt
Within the usa, there are thousands of Protestant church buildings whose contributors habitually hold their Bibles with them. those churches--often known as "evangelical" or "fundamentalist"--play an important function in shaping American society. during this e-book, David Watt attracts on years of fieldwork to provide a sublime reinterpretation of how that conservative Protestants impact American politics and tradition. on the center of the ebook is a sympathetic, yet faraway from uncritical, research of these types of social energy which are assumed to be ordinary between Bible-carrying Christians. whereas outsiders usually presuppose that evangelical Christians take without any consideration the authority of sure associations (among them the yank kingdom, enterprises, ministers, males, and heterosexuals), Watt argues that the truth is way extra complicated. it is a concise and full of life booklet that sheds new mild at the manner that Bible-carrying Christians effect the best way that individuals in the United States think--and steer clear of thinking--about social energy.
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Additional info for Bible-Carrying Christians: Conservative Protestants and Social Power
It was a cold, windy day, probably in the 20s, but it was also sunny. I took a city bus to the Broad Street subway and then took the subway up to the corner of Roosevelt Boulevard and Broad. I walked from there to the church (perhaps a twenty-minute walk). In a way, going to this church felt a little like going home. Oddly enough, the ﬁrst man I spoke 42 - to after walking in the door had the same name as my father and grandfather: Ray Watt. Ray Watt and I could not ﬁnd any common relatives.
Christian men treated women with respect and love. They never acted like tyrants. I recall my mother getting ready to go to one of the church’s business meetings, which were held once a month. It had already been decided that she was going to denounce forcefully—ridicule even—some foolish action taken by the deacons. I don’t recall what these men had done, but I do recall that my father’s conversation with my mother about what she was going to say did not involve whether or not she was going to say it.
For many of the people I talk to at Temple and in other academic settings, the narrative is almost self-evidently true. It is not, of course, self-evidently true to me. If it were I would not have spent several years of my life investigating it. And there are things about this story (as will become clear shortly) that make me squirm with discomfort. But in relating it, I am not, by any means, simply creating a strawman. Even before I began my ﬁeldwork, I was aware that there was a lot of evidence in the scholarly record that could be ﬁt into the story quite nicely.