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powerful evangelicals

Brayden

Michael Lindsay, a sociologist at Rice University, has a fascinating article in the last issue of ASR about the rise of evangelical Christians to positions of prominence and power in the U.S. The article discusses the movement-like qualities of evangelicalism and how this aided in the creation of an identity and social networks that facilitated their rise. I liked the article a lot but I felt like I was missing part of the story. So I read his new book, Faith in the Halls of Power: How Evangelicals Joined the American Elite.

I really can’t praise this book enough. It appeals to an academic audience while remaining accessible for a broader audience of educated readers. Lindsay’s findings (in both the article and book) stem from interviews with 360 leaders in the world of politics, culture, and business. He interviewed people like Jerry Colangelo (owner of the Phoenix Suns), R. Glenn Hubbard (dean of the Columbia Business School), and Pat Robertson. The stories they tell are really interesting, ranging from the “coming out” stories of corporate executives who reveal their Christian backgrounds to stories about artists and filmmakers trying to walk the line between commercialism and staying true to their beliefs. The last section of the book should be especially interesting to readers of this blog. In those chapters he outlines how executives’ Christian beliefs alter the way they run their companies and how it affects their interaction with other executives. This is a book that will interest scholars who study executives, political power and influence, religion and institutions, and social movements.

Written by brayden king

March 18, 2008 at 1:59 pm

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  1. […] Michael Lindsay: Faith in the Halls of Power […]

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  2. […] on orgtheory recently exemplify this new political sociology of the right: Michael Lindsay’s Faith in the Halls of Power, Steven Teles’s The Rise of the Conservative Legal Movement, and Tina Fetner’s How the […]

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