New Monasticism and the Transformation of American Evangelicalism

Paperback | July 14, 2015

byWes Markofski

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For most of the last century, popular and scholarly common sense has equated American evangelicalism with across-the-board social, economic, and political conservatism. However, if a growing chorus of evangelical leaders, media pundits, and religious scholars is to be believed, the era ofuncontested evangelical conservatism is on the brink of collapse - if it hasn't collapsed already. Combining vivid ethnographic storytelling and incisive theoretical analysis, New Monasticism and the Transformation of American Evangelicalism introduces readers to the fascinating and unexploredterrain of neo-monastic evangelicalism. Often located in disadvantaged urban neighborhoods, new monastic communities pursue religiously inspired visions of racial, social, and economic justice - alongside personal spiritual transformation - through diverse and creative expressions of radicalcommunity. In this account, Wes Markofski has immersed himself in the paradoxical world of evangelical neo-monasticism, focusing on the Urban Monastery - an influential neo-monastic community located in a gritty, racially diverse neighborhood in a major Midwestern American city. The resulting account of theway in which this movement reflects and is contributing to the transformation of American evangelicalism challenges entrenched stereotypes and calls attention to the dynamic diversity of religious and political points of view which vie for supremacy in the American evangelical subculture. NewMonasticism and the Transformation of American Evangelicalism is the first sociological analysis of new monastic evangelicalism and the first major work to theorize the growing theological and political diversity within twenty-first-century American evangelicalism.

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For most of the last century, popular and scholarly common sense has equated American evangelicalism with across-the-board social, economic, and political conservatism. However, if a growing chorus of evangelical leaders, media pundits, and religious scholars is to be believed, the era ofuncontested evangelical conservatism is on the b...

Wes Markofski is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Graduate Research Fellow in the Institute for Research on Poverty.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:384 pages, 9.21 × 6.1 × 1.18 inPublished:July 14, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0190258012

ISBN - 13:9780190258016

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. A New EvangelicalismPart I: Neo-Monasticism and American Evangelicalism2. Evangelical Religion and Politics in the 20th Century3. Neo-Monasticism and the Field of American EvangelicalismPart II: The Urban Monastery4. Belief and Meaning in an Urban Monastery5. Politics and Religion in an Urban Monastery6. Organizing Community for Holistic Mission: An Urban Monastery in ActionConclusion7. The Transformation of American EvangelicalismAppendixReferences

Editorial Reviews

"For over three decades, the political leaders of the Christian Right have presented evangelical Protestantism as a static monolith and secular observers have eagerly ratified this picture. Drawing on a half-decade of ethnographic observation and the social theory of Pierre Bourdieu, WesMarkofski shatters this portrait to reveal the internal fault-lines within the evangelical 'field' and the ongoing conflicts that are radically reshaping it. Along the way, he provides an intimate portrait of the most dynamic element in contemporary evangelicalism: 'the new urban monastics.'Evangelical monastics, you say? Read on." --Philip Gorski, Professor of Sociology and Religious Studies at Yale University