Divided by Faith: Evangelical Religion and the Problem of Race in America

Paperback | November 15, 2001

byMichael O. Emerson, Christian Smith

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Through a nationwide telephone survey of 2,000 people and an additional 200 face-to-face interviews, Michael O. Emerson and Christian Smith probed the grassroots of white evangelical America. They found that despite recent efforts by the movement's leaders to address the problem of racialdiscrimination, evangelicals themselves seem to be preserving America's racial chasm. In fact, most white evangelicals see no systematic discrimination against blacks. But the authors contend that it is not active racism that prevents evangelicals from recognizing ongoing problems in Americansociety. Instead, it is the evangelical movement's emphasis on individualism, free will, and personal relationships that makes invisible the pervasive injustice that perpetuates racial inequality. Most racial problems, the subjects told the authors, can be solved by the repentance and conversion ofthe sinful individuals at fault. Combining a substantial body of evidence with sophisticated analysis and interpretation, the authors throw sharp light on the oldest American dilemma. In the end, they conclude that despite the best intentions of evangelical leaders and some positive trends, real racial reconciliation remainsfar over the horizon.

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Through a nationwide telephone survey of 2,000 people and an additional 200 face-to-face interviews, Michael O. Emerson and Christian Smith probed the grassroots of white evangelical America. They found that despite recent efforts by the movement's leaders to address the problem of racialdiscrimination, evangelicals themselves seem to ...

Michael O. Emerson is the Tsanoff Professor of Public Affairs and Sociology at Rice University, the author of numerous articles on race relations and religion, and the co-author of United by Faith. He lives in Houston, Texas. Christian Smith is the Chapin Distinguished Professor of Sociology at the University of North Carolina, Chapel...

other books by Michael O. Emerson

Blacks and Whites in Christian America: How Racial Discrimination Shapes Religious Convictions
Blacks and Whites in Christian America: How Racial Disc...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:224 pages, 5.12 × 7.72 × 0.51 inPublished:November 15, 2001Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195147073

ISBN - 13:9780195147070

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"A carefully nuanced descriptive analysis of 'the white experience' in relation to evangelical religion. Not since I read Charles Marsh's God's Long Summer...have I encountered such a conscientious engagement of the ethical problem of religion and race among white evangelicals."--Cheryl J.Sanders, Professor of Christian Ethics at Howard University School of Divinity and senior pastor, Third Street Church of God in Washington, D.C., as quoted in Harvard Divinity Bulletin