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Religion and Society in America

This course focuses on important currents in US religious history and culture. While the approach is very loosely chronological, it is not intended as a comprehensive survey of American religions in the United States. Our goal is to explore the relationship between religion and society by considering the interaction of society’s various participants in the shaping of a shared and often deeply contested “American” culture. Beginning with the encounters between native peoples, enslaved Africans and Europeans in the 1600s, we will look at the ways in which individual believers and various groups in the “New World” have defined their religious identities and attempted to manage their relations with one another and the state during periods of colonialism, slavery, migration, industrialization, immigration, and increasing ethnic and religious pluralism.

This syllabus was created for the Young Scholars in American Religion program.

Clarence Hardy

Dartmouth College

Private College or University
Institution Type

Resource Type

Intro, Undergraduate Course
Class Type

Date Published

Religious Studies, American Studies

Catholic, General Comparative Traditions, Other Traditions, Protestant
Religous Tradition

Gender/Women/ Sexuality, Immigration/Refugees, Politics/Law/Government, Popular Culture/Media/Music/Sports, Pluralism/Secularism/Culture Wars, Race/Ethnicity

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