Sharing the Journey: Support Groups and the Quest for a New Community

Overview

Millions of Americans, an estimated 40 percent of our population, are flocking to support groups of all kinds-from AA to abuse prevention to pray fellowships. Why, and with what consequences? In a landmark study of one thousand small groups around the country, Robert Wuthnow of Princeton University, a leading interpreter of American religion and culture, examines the growth of the support group movement and its meaning in our national life. Wuthnow shows that this movement is effecting a quiet revolution-one that...
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Sharing the Journey: Support Groups and the Quest for a New Community

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Overview

Millions of Americans, an estimated 40 percent of our population, are flocking to support groups of all kinds-from AA to abuse prevention to pray fellowships. Why, and with what consequences? In a landmark study of one thousand small groups around the country, Robert Wuthnow of Princeton University, a leading interpreter of American religion and culture, examines the growth of the support group movement and its meaning in our national life. Wuthnow shows that this movement is effecting a quiet revolution-one that is dramatically changing our relationship to the self, to the community, and to the sacred.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780684826233
  • Publisher: Free Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/1996
  • Edition description: 1st Free Press pbk. ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 480
  • Product dimensions: 1.07 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
1 Introduction: The Small-Group Movement 1
2 The Quest for Community: Social and Cultural Contexts of the Small-Group Movement 31
3 Exploring the Options: Varieties of Small Groups and Their Constituencies 59
4 A Good Place to Begin: Institutional Underpinnings, Networks, and Resources 89
5 Making It Work: Group Structure, Activities, and Member Satisfaction 125
6 Getting and Giving Support: The Role of Small Groups in Nurturing Individual Needs 163
7 Balancing Self and Others: Compatibility, Conflict, and Compromise Between Individualism and Group Commitments 189
8 The Spiritual Dimension: Personal Faith in Small Groups 219
9 What Matters? Group Processes and Individual Spirituality 257
10 The Power of Stories: Narrative and Spiritual Growth 289
11 Serving the Community: Group Membership and Public Commitment 317
12 Envoi: The Shared Journey, Spirituality, and the Social Role of American Religion 341
Appendix A. Methodology 367
Appendix B. The Small Groups Survey 393
Notes 423
Selected Bibliography 445
Index 451
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