A journalist known for her writing on religion and education in the Wall Street Journal and other top periodicals, Riley presents an engrossing survey of the growing world of religious higher education. To the secularly educated reader, this book is a fascinating anthropological glimpse into unfamiliar pockets of religious America. To the religiously affiliated, it cogently synthesizes issues and goals common to many of these colleges regardless of religion. Riley points out that enrollments are rising at these institutions and that a new educated "missionary generation" is bringing faith into the professional world. She argues that if "religious college leaders can navigate between the dangers of secularization and isolation, these schools can more effectively transmit their ideas to a larger American audience" and help build bridges between "red" and "blue" America. Riley's findings are based on visits to 20 different campuses, and she devotes her first six chapters to schools with various affiliations (Mormon, fundamentalist Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox Jewish and Baptist). She spent up to a week on each campus, attended religious services and social events, sat in on classes and conducted interviews. The second half takes on common themes relevant to issues of student life on religious campuses: feminism, race, minority religious groups, lifestyle choices, integration of faith and intellect, and political activism.
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What are young Americans looking for in a college education? In what he considers one of the most surprising developments in higher education, Riley finds that a growing number of students are forsaking postmodern secularism by seeking deeper religious faith. Through extended visits to 20 faith-based schools, Riley has monitored the quickening pulse of religious devotion among college students divided by doctrinal tenets (Catholics, Protestants, Mormons, Jews, and Buddhists) but united by a shared desire for an education unifying secular and sacred truths. That quest for educational unity looks different at Notre Dame than it does at Wheaton College, and different still at Brigham Young University than it does at Yeshiva University. But despite the differences, Riley recognizes that faculty, administrators, and students at all these schools face common challenges as they translate faith into this-world decisions about careers and family, sex and politics. And as the metaphysically confident graduates of these schools chart paths that elevate them to prominence in government and business, Riley sees them exerting ever-greater influence on the national culture. Balanced treatment of a socially potent movement in higher education. Bryce Christensen
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The theme of modern college life is experimentation, rebellion, drunkenness, and other sewing other wild oats. Read morePublished on August 6, 2012 by Reid Mccormick
I greatly liked that Ms. Riley went after some of the more salient questions for religious colleges today, such as attitudes towards feminism, acceptance of gay or lesbian... Read morePublished on August 20, 2010 by Kirk C. Baker
You will understand what Riley means by her subtitle. The schools the author reviews run the gamut from ultra-crazy (Bob Jones University), to institutions that aren't much... Read morePublished on June 13, 2008 by PDC
Looking forward to a sequel,focusing on how the graduates
of these colleges fared in the "real world" after leaving the
Quad. Read more