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Televangelism Reconsidered: Ritual in the Search for Human Community

Overview

By closely examining four television programs—Falwell's "The Old-Time Gospel Hour," Robertson's "700 Club," the Bakkers' "PTL Club," and the telecasts of Jimmy Swaggart—this work considers the attraction of televangelism for its conservative Christian audience. It argues that televangelism, as ritual performance, both legitimates the beliefs of viewers and at the same time adapts other beliefs of its viewers to the broader culture.

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Overview

By closely examining four television programs—Falwell's "The Old-Time Gospel Hour," Robertson's "700 Club," the Bakkers' "PTL Club," and the telecasts of Jimmy Swaggart—this work considers the attraction of televangelism for its conservative Christian audience. It argues that televangelism, as ritual performance, both legitimates the beliefs of viewers and at the same time adapts other beliefs of its viewers to the broader culture.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781555409074
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 1/28/1994
  • Series: AAR Studies in Religion Series , #68
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 216
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
1 Introduction: Televangelism As Redressive Ritual within A Larger Social Drama 1
Pt. 1 Behind the Scenes, or The Bigger Picture 17
2 Televangelism in Caricature and Its Human Face 19
3 Viewers' Marginalized Religion and Social Standing within American Society 31
4 The Religion of Televangelism and its Viewers 49
5 The Emergence of Televangelism As Distinctive Religious Programming 57
Pt. 2 Televangelism As Ritual 63
6 Viewers' Ritual Participation in the Telecasts 65
7 Ritual in the Service of Legitimation and Adaptation 73
8 Ritual in the Search for Human Community 85
Pt. 3 The Television Programs 95
9 "The Old-Time Gospel Hour": Ritual in the Service of Legitimation 97
10 The "700 Club": Ritual in the Service of Adaptation 113
11 "Jimmy Swaggart": Ritual Community on the Offensive 125
12 The "PTL Club" and "The Jim and Tammy Show": Ritual Community As Refuge 141
13 Conclusion: The Recent Shift in Ritual Roles: Televangelism's New Emphasis on Community 157
Appendix: Survey of Viewers 163
Endnotes 185
Bibliography 201
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