Evangelicalism and Democracy in Latin America ~ Praxis Habitus - On Race Religion & Culture

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Evangelicalism and Democracy in Latin America

Evangelicalism is a world-wide phenomenon. Some of the most interesting happenings relate to the relationship between religion, economics, and politics in the Global South. Toward gaining a better understanding, I found a brief book review of new research put together in the recently published edited volume by my friend Paul Freston.

Religion in the Global South

Evangelical Christianity and Democracy in Latin America (Series: Evangelical Christianity and Democracy in the Global South)

Paul is simply brilliant and seems to know more about economics, religion, and politics in the Global South than anyone on the planet. This book, part of a series at Oxford, bring his expertise along others by drawing together case studies from Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Peru, and Brazil.

According to the review, the book contains "a thorough introduction by the editor and a well-rounded conclusion by scholar of Latin American religion and politics Daniel Levine place the case studies in a broader perspective."

One insight from the book:

"The experiences of evangelicals are markedly different from country to country, yet the overall impression is not of a religious community suddenly appearing out of a Catholic/communist vacuum, but rather of an assortment of religious forms playing a larger role in public discourse (whether among the grassroots or political elites) because of increased opportunities after the Cold War."
-- E. M. Mazur, Virginia Wesleyan College, CHOICE Reviews, January 2009.

Watch for more research on evangelicalism and its consequences in the Global South.

More New Research on the Global South

Research on the Global South is challenging, often requiring more money, specific language skills, and a phenomenal amount cooperation by local governments and church ministries. Yet it's drawing some of the best scholars to take up the challenge.

While I'm at it, here are two other books I enjoyed reading this year on evangelicalism and pentecostalism in the Global South:

Global Pentecostalism: The New Face of Christian Social Engagement

Reason to Believe: Cultural Agency in Latin American Evangelicalism

No comments: