In Bach in America, volume 5 of Bach Perspectives, nine scholars track Johann Sebastian Bach's reputation in America from an artist of relative obscurity to a cultural mainstay whose music has spread to all parts of the population, inspired a wealth of scholarship, captivated listeners, and inspired musicians.
More than a hundred years passed after Bach's death in 1750 before his music began to be known and appreciated in the United States. Barbara Owen surveys Bach's early reception in America and Matthew Dirst focuses on John Sullivan Dwight's role in advocating Bach's work. Michael Broyles considers the ways Bach's music came to be known in Boston and Mary J. Greer offers a counterpoint in her study of Bach's reception in New York.
The volume continues with Hans-Joachim Schulze's essay linking the American descendants of August Reinhold Bach to J. S. Bach through a common sixteenth-century ancestor. Christoph Wolff focuses on Bach's descendants in America, particularly Friederica Sophia Bach, the daughter of Bach's eldest son, Wilhelm Friedemann. Peter Wollny evaluates several manuscripts not included in Gerhard Herz's study of Bach Sources in America.
Bach in America concludes with examinations of Bach's considerable influence on American composers. Carol K. Baron compares the music of Bach and Charles Ives and Stephen A. Crist measures Bach's influence on the jazz pianist and composer Dave Brubeck.
CONGREGATIONS IN AMERICA
Mark Chaves Harvard University Press, 2004 Library of Congress BL2525.C445 2004 | Dewey Decimal 206.5097309049
More Americans belong to religious congregations than to any other kind of voluntary association. What these vast numbers amount to--what people are doing in the over 300,000 churches, synagogues, mosques, and temples in the United States--is a question that resonates through every quarter of American society, particularly in these times of "faith-based initiatives," "moral majorities," and militant fundamentalism. And it is a question answered in depth and in detail in Congregations in America.
Drawing on the 1998 National Congregations Study--the first systematic study of its kind--as well as a broad range of quantitative, qualitative, and historical evidence, this book provides a comprehensive overview of the most significant form of collective religious expression in American society: local congregations. Among its more surprising findings, Congregations in America reveals that, despite the media focus on the political and social activities of religious groups, the arts are actually far more central to the workings of congregations. Here we see how, far from emphasizing the pursuit of charity or justice through social services or politics, congregations mainly traffic in ritual, knowledge, and beauty through the cultural activities of worship, religious education, and the arts.
Along with clarifying--and debunking--arguments on both sides of the debate over faith-based initiatives, the information presented here comprises a unique and invaluable resource, answering previously unanswerable questions about the size, nature, make-up, finances, activities, and proclivities of these organizations at the very center of American life.
Table of Contents:
1. What Do Congregations Do? 2. Members, Money, and Leaders 3. Social Services 4. Civic Engagement and Politics 5. Worship 6. The Arts 7. Culture in Congregations, Congregations in Culture 8. Beyond Congregations
Appendix A: National Congregations Study Methodology Appendix B: Selected Summary Statistics from the National Congregations Study Notes References Index
Reviews of this book: An unchurched observer might conclude that American congregational life centers on political or social service activities...[But] using his pioneering 1998 National Congregations Survey, the first study to delve into the specific activities of a truly representative sampling of the nation's religious congregations, [Chaves] finds that politics and service programs are not the main draws. Indeed, most congregations put little effort into community work...What congregations are most engaged in, Chaves reveals, are cultural activities. That includes education and the many components of worship, of course, but also the generally less-remarked-upon activities of producing and consuming art and culture, particularly musical and theatrical performances, outside of worship. --Jay Tolson, U.S. News and World Report
"A lively, readable narrative, informative to general readers and scholars alike. In its closely documented pages, one of the boldest and most iconoclastic women in Jacksonian America lives again."
-- New York Times Book Review
As much of the world tried to return to normal living and working patterns after World War II, some 70,000 British women chose to be uprooted from the homeland they knew and loved. These were British war brides, a uniformly young group who by marrying American servicemen became part of the largest single group of female immigrants to the United States.
Though the women came to the U.S. from all parts of the British Isles, they were an unusually homogeneous group, averaging 23 years of age, from working- or lower-middle-class families and having completed mandatory schooling to the age of fourteen. For the most part they emigrated alone and didn't move into an existing immigrant population.
Jenel Virden draws on records in the National Archives in Washington, D.C., and the Public Record Office in London, as well as questionnaires and personal interviews, in relating the women's story. Virden finds that the marriages actually took place in spite of, rather than because of, the war.
And, while the women benefited from special nonrestrictive immigration legislation--and found public welcomes and a good deal of favorable publicity when they arrived--they also had much in common with other immigrant groups, including a strong sense of ethnic identity.
This is the first complete
account of the epic tale of the Icarians and their dream of creating a
perfect society without money or property. Robert P. Sutton analyzes the
origins of Icarianism in the milieu of French politics in the 1840s, discusses
its founder Etienne Cabet, and traces the eventual creation of six communal
societies in Illinois, Iowa, and California between 1848 and 1898. Les Icariens is a fascinating amalgam of biography, a history of French
Socialism, and the story of one of the longest-lived secular communal
experiments in America.
Writing in the New York Times Magazine, Max Frankel characterized Unsecular Media as a book that "leaves you thinking about the saintly role that religion has acquired in our allegedly irreligious
Mark Silk's book is the first to offer a comprehensive description and
analysis of how American news media cover religion.