'In this bold, thoughtful, and complex work, Conrad Ostwalt counters major currents in religious and theological studies that identify the nature and role of the religious and sacred by positing their contrary relation to the secular and profane. He argues and richly illustrates how and why these putative contraries are actually in constant and various involvements with and even dependencies on one another and how awareness of these relational dynamics can and should affect our understandings of both American culture and religion and theology.' -- Wesley Kort, Professor in the Department of Religion, Duke University, USA. 'More a reengagement than a revision, this second edition of Conrad Ostwalt's influential work on secularization, religion, and popular culture retains the best aspects of the original-a clear theoretical framework and relevant, entertaining examples-while incorporating not only new material, but also student-friendly features such as lists of key words and concepts, study questions, and even suggestions for guided readings.The first edition of Secular Steeples allowed readers to navigate the reciprocal relationship between religion and popular culture.This new edition will engage, educate, and entertain both previous and new readers alike.I look forward to using it in my classes.' -- Dan W. Clanton, Jr., Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, Doane College, Nebraska, USA 'In contrast to modern sociology's secularization theories, Ostwalt sees the sacred and the secular commingling as religious groups secularize by adopting secular forms and as secular forms and institutions betray religious sensibilities. New material in this edition includes forays into football stadiums, Harry Potter, 2012, motorcycles, and the emergent church. To place, text, and image, he now adds communitas. He also adds a chapter seeking to ground his theological view of postmodernism in process theology. Finally, his addition of questions, assignments, and reading suggestions will facilitate the use of the book in classrooms.' -- Richard Walsh, Professor of Religion at Methodist University, USA.
About the Author
Conrad Ostwalt is Professor of Religious Studies and Chair of the Department of Philosophy and Religion at Appalachian State University, USA.