Religion and Personal Autonomy: The Third Disestablishment in America

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University of South Carolina Press, 1992 - History - 219 pages
Based on extensive primary research and grounded in a historical and theoretical framework, Religion and Personal Autonomy analyzes the role of religion in contemporary American society. The book makes a significant contribution to the current debate among American--and some non-American--sociologists of religion concerning secularization, the contemporary cultural role of 'mainline' religion for individuals, and the relevance of regional differences in religious identity and change. In this thought-provoking book, the author suggests that while the churches have heretofore reflected local social relationships and a traditional family morality, recent social revolutions have accelerated major changes in this church-culture relationship most evident in the increased emphasis on personal autonomy. In effect, Hammond argues, churches have lost the custodianship of American core values.

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