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Religion as Entertainment

With a Foreword by Wade Clark Roof

C.K. Robertson

In this collection of essays, religion in the United States is explored in terms of its interaction with an entertainment-focused culture. The first half of the book addresses questions of how religion actually fulfills an «entertaining» role in society, focusing on lay participation in faith communities, the goals and impact of preaching the rise of non-traditional religions and attraction of meditation in recent years, and the question of whether bigger crowds are always better. The second half of the book focuses on how religion is treated in various entertainment media, including film, music, television, and literature.
Contents: Wade Clark Roof: Foreword – C.K. Robertson: Introduction – Michael Rusk: The Great Awakening: American Religion Comes of Age – Douglas C. Mohrmann: Megachurch, Virtual Church – Thomas Höbel: From Spectators to Participants: The Role of the Laity – Donald Heet: Preaching: Entertaining or Entertainment? – John W. Gamble: When East Meets West: The Rise of Meditation – Robert Viau: Cult Multiculturalism in the Deep South: From Alienation to Alien Nations – Stuart Brooks Keith III: It’s Not That Simple: A Survey of Televangelism – B.J. Oropeza: The Toronto Blessing and the Future of Revivalism – James McGrath: Religion, But Not as We Know It: Spirituality and Sci-Fi – Kathryn McClymond: The Gospel According to Oprah: A Canon for Contemporary Living – Teresa Blythe: The God of Prime-Time Television – C.K. Robertson: Ministers in the Movies – Amy Burt: Amazing Graceland: Elvis and the Story of Gospel Music – S. Clark Heindel: It’s Only Rock and Roll – C.K. Robertson: Conclusion: Entertaining Religion.