Popular religion rarely expresses itself in the artifacts of high culture. In this book, Lippy approaches the study of popular religion by asking how ordinary people have gone about the process of being religious in America. Along the way, he examines popular religious periodicals, newspapers, vels, diaries, devotional materials, hymnals, promotional materials for revivals and camp meetings, religious tracts, as well as vernacular art and architecture, other artifacts, and, especially in the 20th century, radio, film, and television. He avoids the traditional focus on religious movements and institutions, choosing instead to illuminate the cultural impact of what people in America think and do when they are being religious by highlighting aspects of private life.
CHARLES H. LIPPY is Professor of Religion at Clemson University. His previous works include Seasonable Revolutionary: The Mind of Charles Chauncey (1981), Religious Periodicals of the United States (1986), The Christadelphians in North America (1989) and Christianity Comes to the Americas, 1492-1776 (co-authored, 1992). He is the editor of Twentieth-Century Shapers of American Popular Religion, and co-editor of the three-volume Encyclopedia of the American Religious Experience. His numerous articles have appeared in Journal of Religious Studies, Journal of Church and State, Eighteenth Century Life, and the Journal of Popular Culture.