Accounting for Fundamentalisms features treatments of fundamentalist movements, groups that often make headlines but are rarely understood, as part of the multivolume Fundamentalism Project. This book remains a standard reference source for comprehending the dynamics of fundamentalist movements around the world. Surveying fundamentalist movements in Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, and Buddhism, the contributors to Accounting for Fundamentalisms describe the organization of these movements, their leadership and recruiting techniques, and the ways in which their ideological programs and organizational structures shift over time in response to changing political and social environments.
Since 1979 Southern Baptists have been noisily struggling to agree on symbols, beliefs, and practices as they attempt to make sense of their changing social world. Nancy Ammerman has carefully documented their struggle. She tells the story of the Baptist reversal from a moderate to a fundamentalist outlook and speculates on the future of the denomination.
Ammerman places change among the Southern Baptists in the context of the cultural and economic changes that have transformed the South from its rural past into an urbanizing, culturally diverse region. Not only did the South change; Southern Baptists did as well. Reflecting this diversity, the Southern Baptist bureaucracy was relatively progressive. During the 1960s and 1970s, moderate sentiments prevailed, while fundamentalists remained on the margins. These two were, however, becoming increasingly divergent in what they considered important about being a Baptist, in their views about the Bible, in their attitudes on the origination of women, on Christian morals, and on national politics.
Late in the 1970s, a fundamentalist coalition emerged, followed by unsuccessful efforts by moderates to oppose it. The battles escalated until 1985, when 45,000 Baptists gathered in Dallas to decide between contending presidential candidates. That dramatic event illustrated the extent to which organized political resources were determining the course of the conflict. Ammerman studies these strategies and resources as well.
Examining how this tension affected Baptists, Ammerman begins with case studies of the change it is producing in Baptist agencies. But she also brings us back to the local churches and individual believers who are renegotiating their relationships within their denomination. She asks whether the denomination’s polity can accommodate an increasingly diverse group of Baptists, of whether the only way dissidents can have a voice is through schism.
Bible believer (also Bible-believer,Bible-believing Christian,Bible-believing Church) is a self-description by conservative Christians to differentiate their teachings from others who see non- or extrabiblical tradition as higher or equal in authority.
In normal usage, "Bible believer" means an individual or organisation that believes the Christian Bible is true in some significant way. However, this combination of words is given a unique meaning in fundamentalist Protestant circles, where it is equated with the belief that the Christian Bible "contains no theological contradictions, historical discrepancies, or other such 'errors'", otherwise known as biblical inerrancy.
Congregation and Community
Ammerman, Nancy Rutgers University Press, 1996 Library of Congress BR526.A45 1997 | Dewey Decimal 250.973
Change--in population, economy, and culture--is sweeping through American communities. Corner groceries are stocking new foods. New roads are being built and Main Streets abandoned. Schools have come and gone, and old friends move away as strangers arrive. But in every community, no matter how volatile, religious institutions provide for their members places of moral guidance and spiritual nurture, civic participation, and identity.
How do congregations react to significant community change? Why do some religious institutions decline in the face of racial integration while others adapt and grow? How do congregations make sense of economic distress? Do they provide havens from community upheaval or vehicles for change? Congregation and Community is the most comprehensive study to date of congregations in the face of community transformation. Nancy Ammerman and her colleagues include stories of over twenty congregations in nine communities from across the nation, communities with new immigrant populations, growing groups of gays and lesbians, rapid suburbanization, and economic dislocations.
With almost half of the nation's population attending religious services each week, it is impossible to understand change in American society without a close look at congregations. Congregation and Community will exist as a standard resource for years to come, and clergy, academics, and general readers alike will benefit from its insights.