November 9, 2010

Topic for Discussion: “God in America” Goes West

by Tom Bremer

The recent PBS documentary “God in American: How Religious Liberty Shaped America" has received much attention, both critical and laudatory, from historians of American religions—see, for instance, reviews at Religion Dispatches (and this one); at The Immanent Frame; at Religion in American History (and this one; and yet another); and at the New York Times.  One criticism has been the scant attention to religion in the American west.  How might the American west have been better integrated in the narrative of “God in America,” and how would it have been a different kind of story if the religious history of the west had been more prominent?

1 comment:

Jim Bennett said...

A good question. Ed Blum in his review at patheoes ( imagined what the series might look a decade or two in the future and suggested in his first change, the centrality of the West. The story of early and ever expanding religious pluralism in the West, would have fit one of the series' primary theme. And, here's hoping that future versions would feature scholar and not just subjects from the West! Thanks, Tom, for getting this discussion going.