Sunday Night Odds and Ends

A few things online that caught my attention this week;

Interviews with search committees

Broomsticks in American slavery

Staying awake to watch LeBron

Faith and loss

Du Bois and institutional racism

Are “white evangelical voters” evangelical?

Teaching Hamilton

Populism and liberal elites

Monrovia, Indiana

Catherine O’Donnell on writing biography

The final years of the slave trade

Doing public scholarship

Colonial Canada?

Some great university press books about politics

Teaching the early American republic in Utah

The evangelical crackup

Mental maps of politics

One thought on “Sunday Night Odds and Ends

  1. The Faith and Loss book review left me slightly heartsick. An emotionally troubled young woman beset by an eating disorder and apparent alienation from her family seems to be attempting to reconcile her current less-than-joyous condition to her Pentecostal childhood. The review doesn’t provide enough information to inform us how successful she was, but it is my guess that the woman is still grasping for a piece of solid moral and emotional ground.

    I have known some very serious and dedicated Christians within the Pentecostal movement, but I have known many more adherents who are on a continual emotional roller coaster. This is due to a theology which generally emphasizes dramatic experience over measured and systematic doctrine. While I don’t have reliable statistics, I speculate that Pentecostalism has a relatively high spiritual casualty rate.

    Interestingly, the publisher of the autobiography is Beacon Press which, if I am not mistaken, is an arm of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA.) It well fits within their game plan to publish material critical of more fundamental forms of religion like Pentecostalism. Ironically, UUA congregations have had great difficulty retaining their youth. National membership numbers for the denomination are essentially static. Most new members are adults from other religious backgrounds or from no particular background. I would bet that the Pentecostals do a much better job of retaining their young people into adulthood.

    All denominations, sects, and religions in general suffer membership losses, and the reasons are varied. I’d love to read the autobiography of someone who was reared as a UU, found it wanting, and struck out on an alternative denominational path.

    Like

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