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Mainline Christianity: The Past and Future of America's Majority Faith Paperback – April 30, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 196 pages
  • Publisher: NYU Press (April 30, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814753310
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814753316
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,295,414 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Provides a wide-ranging survey and trenchant critique of the history of mainline Christianity in America. Lantzer's cautionary tale of the mainline's decline offers a stimulating introduction to these denominations--Methodist, Lutheran, Episcopal, and others--which remain the church home for tens of millions of American Christians."
-Thomas S. Kidd,Baylor University, author of God of Liberty: A Religious History of the American Revolution

"Recommended for lower-division undergraduates and above [as well as] general readers."-CHOICE,

"Jason S. Lantzer provides an excellent denomination-by-denomination analysis."-The Journal of American History,

"While in some circles, the very premise of Christianity being 'mainline' in any form in the twenty-first-century America is hotly contested, Lantzer wants to retain and redefine the term."-Dwight Zscheile,Lutheran Quarterly

About the Author

Jason S. Lantzer is Adjunct Professor of History at Indiana University Purdue University and at Butler University. He is the author of Prohibition is Here to Stay: The Rev. Edward S. Shumaker and the Dry Crusade in America.
 

More About the Author

A native Hoosier, Jason Lantzer holds a BA, MA, and PhD all from Indiana University. His research and writing interest center on the intersection of religion, politics, and law in American History.

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Format: Paperback
This book delivers on history-facts and fresh analysis. The academic grounding allows consideration of this topic without the baggage that accompanies political discussions. A springboard to myriad related-intertwined topics. A great book-club read for those seeking serious discourse.
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For the last several decades the group of denominations historically labeled "mainline" has been declining in number of members and influence in the larger culture. Any talk of a future for an individual mainline denomination or for the group as a whole is heavily influenced by this reality. These conversations have lacked a single historically accurate resource that offers a thorough and thoughtful account of the decline in the context of the full history of the mainline.

Book Basics

Mainline Christianity is a must read for all within the declining denominations, those of other religious traditions within the United States, and those interested in American history - especially in the twentieth century. At just 137 pages (before extensive end notes), Lantzer's one volume approach is concise yet complete, and scholarly yet straightforward.

Mainline Christianity is the story of the development and decline of the Seven Sisters of American Protestantism: the Congregational Church (now a part of the United Church of Christ), the Episcopal Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA), the United Methodist Church, the American Baptist Convention, and the Disciples of Christ. It is also an account of Christianity in America today insofar as what denominations could become and already functionally serve as America's mainline insofar as numbers and popular opinion: Evangelical (including the largest American Protestant denomination: Southern Baptist Convention), Roman Catholic (the largest Christian "denomination" in the country and the world), and Pentecostal (currently the fastest growing type of Christianity).
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