The Oxford Encyclopedia of Religion in America

Kate Bowler and Russell E. Richey (Contributors)
Oxford University Press
Published Year: 
abstract cover image of The Oxford Encyclopedia of Religion in America

Duke Divinity Professors Kate Bowler and Russell E. Richey are among leading scholars offering cutting-edge interpretations of crucial topics and themes on a wide range of topics in American religious history and culture in a new encyclopedia.

The volume, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Religion in America, was published by Oxford University Press. The interdisciplinary work presents more than 110 articles by experts in their fields drawing on scholarship in sociology, geography, philosophy, ethnic studies, and literature, in addition to religion and history. John Corrigan, the Lucius Moody Bristol Distinguished Professor of Religion and professor of history at Florida State University, was the editor-in-chief.

The encyclopedia is organized into five thematic sections based on current areas of research—space, religious ideas, race and ethnicity, public life, and empire. In each section, articles address the religious lives of Americans and the institutions, theologies, and social forces that have influenced those lives and given shape to a broad cultural landscape of religion in America.

Bowler, associate professor of the history of Christianity in North America, is the author of Blessed: A History of the American Prosperity Gospel, published in 2013 by Oxford University Press. The book is considered the first history of the prosperity gospel movement. Her New York Times best-selling memoir, Everything Happens for a Reason (and other lies I’ve loved), published by Random House earlier this year tells the story of Bowler’s struggle to understand the personal and intellectual dimensions of the American belief that all tragedies are tests of character. It was written after she was unexpectedly diagnosed in 2015 with Stage IV cancer at age 35. Bowler is also the host of a popular podcast, Everything Happens, which will begin its second season Nov. 20. Visit Kate Bowler's website.

A visiting professor at Duke Divinity, Richey is a research fellow of the Center for Studies in the Wesleyan Tradition. He is the author of numerous publications including Methodism in the American Forest (Oxford University Press, 2015) and Formation for Ministry in American Methodism: Twenty-first Century Challenges and Two Centuries of Problem-Solving (GBHEM, 2014). Richey is dean emeritus of Candler School of Theology and the William R. Cannon Distinguished Professor of Church History Emeritus at Emory University. He also previously held academic and administrative posts at Duke Divinity from 1986-2000 and at Drew University from 1969-86.