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Religions of America: Ferment and Faith in an Age of Crisis: A New Guide and Almanac [Paperback]

By Leo Rosten (Author)
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Item description for Religions of America: Ferment and Faith in an Age of Crisis: A New Guide and Almanac by Leo Rosten...

Describes te creeds and practices of more than twenty faiths and provides statistical beliefs and attitudes in America regarding religious and moral issues

Publishers Description
This fascinating new book reflects the results of the turmoil and change in the religions of America since Leo Rosten first wrote about them.
The first section consists of nineteen articles by distinguished men, each one a recognized authority on the creed for which he speaks, setting forth the clear and candid stories of our own faiths and those of our neighbors. All religions are covered, from the major established groups to the "charismatic" cults. There are also chapters about the agnostic, the non-churchgoer and what he believes, and the scientist. A multitude of questions are raised and answered, such as: What percent of ministers profess they no longer believe in God? In which leading church can homosexuals be married? How many priests condone birth control devices? Abortions? Which faiths feel what way about intermarriage? Divorce? Have churches that participated in social activism in the 1960s gained or lost in their membership and their finances? Have the Protestant and Roman Catholic churches significantly changed their 400-year-old schism?
Part Two is the Almanac, a massive compendium that is more complete and far-ranging than any other existing one, with the statistics, public opinion polls, basic documents, sociological resumes and psychological analyses of the role, conflicts, influences and trends that characterize religion in the United States today. These basic authoritative facts and figures are accompanied by the author's own essays and comments on material that is rarely subjected to critical examination. There is also a Glossary of religious terminology.
Those familiar with Leo Rosten's "A Guide to the Religions of America" (1955) and his "Religions in America" (1963) need not be told of the extraordinary reception both volumes received from the reviewers and the public. They were acclaimed by theologians of all faiths. Each book sold hundreds of thousands of copies. But this new "Religions of America" renders those two volumes entirely out of date. There is no other book even remotely comparable to it.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Simon & Schuster
Pages   672
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.5" Width: 5.5" Height: 1.6"
Weight:   1.25 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jun 15, 1975
Publisher   Simon & Schuster
Edition  Revised  
ISBN  0671219715  
ISBN13  9780671219710  

Availability  0 units.

More About Leo Rosten

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! The late LEO ROSTEN was the author of The Return of H*Y*M*A*N K*A*P*L*A*N, Captain Newman, M.D., and countless other books, articles, and screenplays.
LAWRENCE BUSH is the author of several books about American Judaism and is the editor of Reconstructionism Today. He lives in Accord, New York.
R.O. BLECHMAN's illustrations have appeared on nineteen covers of The New Yorker and have been exhibited in New York, Paris, Berlin, and Munich. The author/artist of seven books, he lives in New York City.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Product Categories

3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Religious Studies > History
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality

Christian Product Categories
Books > General Interest > Other Religion > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Religions of America?

knowledge of American faiths  May 14, 2007
An explanation of the many religious beliefs in the United States. The manner in which they are similar and some very different from one another. An informative and easy to read narrative that keeps one interested until the end of the book.
Please Update  Apr 23, 2007
Wonderful premise. Even allows each group to describes themselves; but so, so dated. Membership statistics are over 30 years behind! Good doctrinal rundown and comparisions though.
Good Source of Information, But Does Need an Update  Dec 4, 2004
As with some other reviewers, I believe Rosten's book is an excellent source of information for the basic beliefs of various groups while the statistics derived are decidedly outdated.

While core beliefs of different topics (Jesus' divinity, Trinity, salvation, heaven and hell, etc.) have basically remained the same since the book was first published, various statistics (religious group population, church attendance, sex and race composition, youth, etc.) does need some serious updating.

In summary, an excellent book for understanding the basic beliefs of a group. Just get another title for getting updated information!

Helpful but lacking Up to Date Information  Jul 22, 2004
I learned some basic facts but kept asking myself what today's statistics would be, and had these denominations changed their stance since the book was written. The book is constantly using figures and information from the 1970s. I now make it a point to look at the date a book was written before buying.
Great Springboard for Research  Feb 5, 2003
I inherited this book with the rest of my mother's books. It's now one of my favorite books in my personal library, due to the range of information it contains. If you are just interested in learning about various beliefs and practices, or looking for a faith that might be close to your own, or simply curious about the spiritual beliefs of your friends or loved ones, this book is great.

It provides a pretty good overview of each religion, and more than enough information to let you know if you would like to pursue your studies about a particular faith.

Yes, it is old, but so are the religions it covers. Relgions change, but not so much that this book can't give you an accurate and valuable glimpse into the doctrines and values of these religions. I would, however, love to see this book be revised.

My only complaint is that it does not contain other religions of America, like Islam, Hinduism, or Buddhism. Perhaps this is something that could be addressed if this book was revised.

I highly recommend this book. It's a great staple to have in your personal library.


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