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Religious liberalism in America has often been equated with an ecumenical Protestant establishment. By contrast, American Religious Liberalism draws attention to the broad diversity of liberal cultures that shapes America's religious movements. The essays gathered here push beyond familiar tropes and boundaries to interrogate religious liberalism's dense cultural leanings by looking at spirituality in the arts, the politics and piety of religious cosmopolitanism, and the interaction between liberal religion and liberal secularism. Readers will find a kaleidoscopic view of many of the progressive strands of America's religious past and present in this richly provocative volume.

Table of Contents

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  1. Title Page, Copyright Page
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Foreword
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-xiv
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  1. Introduction: The Parameters and Problematics of American Religious Liberalism
  2. pp. 1-14
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  1. Part One: The Spiritual in Art
  2. pp. 15-16
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  1. One: Reading Poetry Religiously: The Walt Whitman Fellowship and Seeker Spirituality
  2. pp. 17-38
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  1. Two: The Christology of Niceness: Harriet Beecher Stowe, the Jesus Novel, and Sacred Trivialities
  2. pp. 39-65
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  1. Images
  2. pp. 66-75
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  1. Three: Visible Liberalism: Liberal Protestant Taste Evangelism, 1850 and 1950
  2. pp. 76-96
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  1. Four: Discovering Imageless Truths: The Bahá’í Pilgrimage of Juliet Thompson, Artist
  2. pp. 97-115
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  1. Five: Where “Deep Streams Flow, Endlessly Renewing”: Metaphysical Religion and “Cultural Evolution” in the Art of Agnes Pelton
  2. pp. 116-138
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  1. Part Two: The Piety and Politics of Liberal Ecumenism
  2. pp. 139-140
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  1. Six: “Citizens of All the World’s Temples”: Cosmopolitan Religion at Bell Street Chapel
  2. pp. 141-161
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  1. Seven: Spiritual Border-Crossings in the U.S. Women’s Rights Movement
  2. pp. 162-181
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  1. Images
  2. pp. 182-189
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  1. Eight: “We Build Our Temples for Tomorrow”: Racial Ecumenism and Religious Liberalism in the Harlem Renaissance
  2. pp. 190-206
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  1. Nine: Reading across the Divide of Faith: Liberal Protestant Book Culture and Interfaith Encounters in Print, 1921–1948
  2. pp. 207-226
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  1. Ten: The Dominant, the Damned, and the Discs: On the Metaphysical Liberalism of Charles Fort and Its Afterlives
  2. pp. 227-250
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  1. Eleven: Liberal Sympathies: Morris Jastrow and the Science of Religion
  2. pp. 251-269
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  1. Twelve: Jewish Liberalism through Comparative Lenses: Reform Judaism and Its Liberal Christian Counterparts
  2. pp. 270-290
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  1. Part Three: Pragmatism, Secularism, and Internationalism
  2. pp. 291-292
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  1. Thirteen: Each Attitude a Syllable: The Linguistic Turn in William James’s Varieties of Religious Experience
  2. pp. 293-313
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  1. Fourteen: Protestant Pragmatism in China, 1919–1927
  2. pp. 314-336
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  1. Fifteen: Demarcating Democracy: Liberal Catholics, Protestants, and the Discourse of Secularism
  2. pp. 337-358
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  1. Sixteen: Religious Liberalism and the Liberal Geopolitics of Religion
  2. pp. 359-373
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  1. Afterword and Commentary: Religious Liberalism and Ecumenical Self-Interrogation
  2. pp. 374-388
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  1. Contributors
  2. pp. 389-392
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 393-416
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