Sacred Song in America: Religion, Music, and Public Culture

Sacred Song in America: Religion, Music, and Public Culture

by Stephen A. Marini
Pub. Date:
University of Illinois Press


Current price is , Original price is $95.0. You
Select a Purchase Option (New Edition)
  • purchase options


Sacred Song in America: Religion, Music, and Public Culture


In Sacred Song in America, Stephen A. Marini explores the full range of American sacred music and demonstrates how the meanings and functions of this musical expression can contribute to a greater understanding of religious culture.


Marini examines the role of sacred song across the United States, from the musical traditions of Native Americans and the Hispanic peoples of the Southwest, to the Sacred Harp singers of the rural South and the Jewish music revival to the music of the Mormon, Catholic, and Black churches. Including chapters on New Age and Neo-Pagan music, gospel music, and hymnals as well as interviews with iconic composers of religious music, Sacred Song in America pursues a historical, musicological, and theoretical inquiry into the complex roles of ritual music in the public religious culture of contemporary America.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780252028007
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
Publication date: 04/28/2003
Series: Public Express Religion America Series
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 416
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.25(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author


Stephen A. Marini is Elisabeth Luce Moore Professor of Christian Studies and a professor of American religion and ethics at Wellesley College. He is the author of Radical Sects of Revolutionary New England.

Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments ix

Introduction: What Is Sacred Song? 1

Part 1 Great Traditions of American Sacred Song

1 Songway: Sacred-Song Traditions of Native America 17

2 Pilgrimage and Penitence: Sacred-Song Traditions of the Hispanic Southwest 39

3 Sacred Harp Singing: Continuity and Change in the American Singing-School Tradition 68

4 "Is It Going to Save Someone?": The Black Church at Song 100

5 Klezmorim and Sephardim: The Jewish Music Revival 130

Part 2 Sacred Song and Contemporary American Religion

6 New Music of the Spheres: From the New Age to Neo-Paganism 163

7 Contested Praise: A Tale of Two Hymnals 184

8 Mormons and Music: Maintaining and Mainstreaming Sectarian Identity 213

9 Troubadour for the Lord: Catholic Charismatics and Sacred Song 239

10 The Conservatory Tradition: Interviews with Daniel Pinkham and Neely Bruce 264

11 Gospel Music: Sacred Song and the Marketplace 296

Conclusion: American Sacred Song and the Meaning of Religious Culture 321

Appendix: Music Examples 331

Index of Titles and First Lines 377

Index of Names and Subjects 383

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews