Religious life in the United States has been marked by an ongoing tension: the power sought, and sometimes obtained, by majority religious groups and the religious pluralism that marks the population and is protected by law. In this class, we will explore this tension through a historically organized survey of majority and minority religious communities. We begin with the continent’s original pluralism in its hundreds of Native American religious traditions. We then move to powerful varieties of Protestant Christianity as they interacted with smaller groups, including colonial-era Jews, upstart Mormons, African-American Christians, newly immigrated Catholics, and more recently arrived immigrants who practice Hinduism and Islam.
This syllabus was created for the Young Scholars in American Religion program.
College of WoosterInstitution
Private College or University Institution Type
Syllabus Resource Type
Undergraduate Course Class Type
2011 Date Published
Religious Studies Discipline
Catholic, General Comparative Traditions, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Other Christianities, Protestant Religous Tradition
Class/Power, Immigration/Refugees, Popular Culture/Media/Music/Sports, Pluralism/Secularism/Culture Wars, Race/Ethnicity, Nationalism/War/Civil Religion Topics