Faith in the Market: Religion and the Rise of Urban Commercial Culture

Overview

Scholars have long assumed that industrialization and the growth of modern cities signaled a decline of religious practice among urban dwellers - that urban commercial culture weakened traditional religious ties by luring the faithful away from their devotional practice. Spanning many disciplines, the essays in this volume challenge this notion of the "secular city" and examine how members of metropolitan houses of worship invented fresh expressions of religiosity by incorporating consumer goods, popular ...
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Overview

Scholars have long assumed that industrialization and the growth of modern cities signaled a decline of religious practice among urban dwellers - that urban commercial culture weakened traditional religious ties by luring the faithful away from their devotional practice. Spanning many disciplines, the essays in this volume challenge this notion of the "secular city" and examine how members of metropolitan houses of worship invented fresh expressions of religiosity by incorporating consumer goods, popular entertainment, advertising techniques, and marketing into their spiritual lives. Faith in the Market explores phenomena from Salvation Army "slum angels" to the "race movies" of the mid-twentieth century, from Catholic teens' modest dress crusades to Black Muslim artists. The contributors-integrating gender, performance, and material culture studies into their analyses-reveal the many ways in which religious groups actually embraced commercial culture to establish an urban presence. Although the city streets may have proved inhospitable to some forms of religion, many others, including evangelicalism, Catholicism, and Judaism, assumed rich and complex forms as they developed in vital urban centers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813530987
  • Publisher: Rutgers University Press
  • Publication date: 7/28/2002
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.34 (h) x 0.89 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction: Hidden in Plain Sight: Religion and Urban Commercial Culture in Modern North America 1
Pt. I Evangelical Experimentation
1 Living in the Material World: Salvation Army Lassies and Urban Commercial Culture, 1880-1918 13
2 Protestant Visual Culture and the Challenges of Urban America during the Progressive Era 37
3 The Best Show in Town: Carry Nation and the Selling of Temperance in the Urban Northeast 57
4 New York, the New Babylon? Fundamentalism and the Modern City in Reverend Straton's Jazz Age Crusade 74
Pt. II Protestant Transformation
5 Building California's Past: Mission Revival Architecture and Regional Identity 91
6 Christian Science Architecture in the American City: The Triumph of the Classical Style 108
7 Banned in Boston: Commercial Culture and the Politics of Moral Reform in Boston during the 1920s 133
Pt. III Minority Adaptation
8 "Saturday Sinners and Sunday Saints": The Nightclub as Moral Menace in 1940s Race Movies 155
9 "In Vogue with Mary": How Catholic Girls Created an Urban Market for Modesty 177
10 Nation Time: Black Islam and African American Cultural Politics, 1955-1970 199
11 Beyond Borscht: The Kosher Lifestyle and the Religious Consumerism of Suburban Orthodox Jews 227
Contributors 247
Index 249
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