Search for Meaning: Americans Talk about What They Believe and Why

Search for Meaning: Americans Talk about What They Believe and Why

by Phillip L. Berman
     
 

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What do Americans, as a people, believe in? What are the experiences that have transformed their lives? How does faith -- in God, in human goodness, in politics, progress, money, or pleasure -- illuminate our actions?

These are the questions that Phillip L. Berman asked when he set off on a four-year, 35,000 mile odyssey to chronicle America's moral imagination. By

Overview

What do Americans, as a people, believe in? What are the experiences that have transformed their lives? How does faith -- in God, in human goodness, in politics, progress, money, or pleasure -- illuminate our actions?

These are the questions that Phillip L. Berman asked when he set off on a four-year, 35,000 mile odyssey to chronicle America's moral imagination. By the time he was through, he had spoken to some five hundred people from all walks of life. What they told him makes this engrossing and radiantly insightful book the first and only oral history of the religious and philosophical beliefs of contemporary Americans.

Vividly compelling in the extraordinary freshness and variety of its many voices, The Search for Meaning offers a full scale portrait of the moral state of the union.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this oral history, Berman captures the voices of a variety of Americans as they discuss the meaning of life and the paths they are taking to realize that meaning. Photos. Author tour. (Jan.)
Library Journal - Library Journal
Berman, who traveled this country and talked with hundreds of people about their beliefs, here gives us about 500 statements of belief as they were told to him on his sojourn. These statements range in length from a brief paragraph to a few pages. Some show little thought, some betray twisted thinking, many reflect the depths of the souls from which they arise. A great variety of people are represented here: racists, victims of racism, survivors of the Holocaust, the Grand Wizard of the KKK, prominent clergy, but mostly ordinary people whose beliefs have been shaped by reading books or by significant experiences such as war, death, sickness, or simply the abundant cares of everyday life. This excellent sourcebook is not only interesting but challenges us to clarify our own beliefs. Highly recommended.-- John Moryl, Yeshiva Univ. Lib., N.Y.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780345377777
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
01/28/1993
Pages:
451
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.00(d)

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