Transculturation and Religion: Religion in the Formation of the Modern United States

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While it has usually been conceived as a Christian nation, founded by Protestant idealists, the United States was actually formed by a series of cultural interactions and exchanges between indigenous and immigrant communities involving a tremendous variety of people from Africa, Asia, Polynesia, South America, and North America, as well as Europe, with a wide array of religious orientations that include traditions on both global and local scales. The narrative that Christianity is the religion of the United States is not the whole story, as it turns out, and not even ½ the story. As a result of these realizations, those involved in the academic study of "American religion" have made strenuous efforts since the 1980s to include in their scope religious traditions other than the "great" textual traditions of Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Judaism, and so on. Native American, African, and African-American traditions, as well as issues concerning ethnic and gender studies, have pressured scholarly academic models for understanding "American religion" to such an extent that new and revised methods are needed to analyze the phenomenon of religion in America. "American religion" is generally understood as the spread of denominational Christianity across the continent. A struggle for inclusion of traditions other than Christianity into the religious narrative of the United States is not just a struggle to include distinctive types of religious institutions. Nor should it be seen as a constant conflict about religious truth and certainty between the different groups of people who populate the United States. Inclusion of a religious dynamic in the formation of the United States requires a shift in our understanding of what constitutes religion. Understanding how exchanges between groups created a unique American identity requires us to characterize religion in ways that include the innovations of indigenous people who did not form religious institutions nor utilize or create written texts, but nevertheless had a tremendous influence on the unique cultural development and character of the United States.

The history of cultural contact in the United States is one between immigrant and indigenous groups and between immigrant and indigenous religious orientations. This way of organizing the place of religion in the formation of the United States requires that we look at religion as habitation and as exchange. Defining religion as habitation and exchange, rather than as an ideological position, shifts religion away from what groups believe to what they do, from what they think to how they act. For example, on one hand religion was a pivotal element in the justification of colonial occupation of the lands of Native Americans and was utilized in the justification of slavery and thus the removal of millions of Africans from their native land in what was called the Middle Passage. Religion was used to justify violence against women and other indentured servants until the implementation of cultural reforms beginning in the mid-nineteenth century. Religion and religious language have been used to exclude Latin Americans from decent working conditions and to justify the forced internment of Japanese people during World War II. Racialized views of entire populations were imagined and then codified by law using the moral language of religion. On the other hand, religion helped these oppressed groups of people overcome their difficult situations and, in the case of African Americans, inhabit the New World in ways that differed from the slave owners. Distinctive styles of inhabiting the world, therefore, are primarily religious in nature.

Native American groups offer the clearest contrast to the immigrant styles of colonizers. Native American religious styles of habitation and exchange highlight aspects of religious practice among other groups of people that might be called indigenous religion among these groups. Investigating the "religion" of Native Americans in light of cultural contact with immigrant people is fundamental to forming a more complete picture of the cultural formation of the United States, because Native American priorities involving community formation and sustainability are radically different from those that have dominated American culture. The religious concerns and priorities of Native American traditions can be fruitfully applied to other groups, making indigenous religions a category with wide application that reveals unsung and unnoticed religious elements of all human communities, particularly those that have not been part of the religious narrative of the United States. Even though "indigenous religion" should be seen as a theme running through all religious activity, here we will emphasize Native American religious traditions in contact with colonizing and dominating forces in the United States as the clearest expression of an indigenous perspective.

Situating Native American traditions in the development of American religion has proven to be particularly vexing. Texts (sacred or otherwise) in the conventional sense of a phonetically inscribed folio have not traditionally held the same privileged place in Native traditions. Consequently, a reliance on texts by ethno-historians and scholars of Native American religions has tended to marginalize indigenous interpretations of sacred realities in favor of what has been written down by colonial people. As a result, Native American traditions have had less influence in considerations of what constitutes authentic American religious life. Through the development of new ways of thinking about religion and new approaches to Native American "religions," a greater understanding of women, African-American, and Latino/a traditions, and what those traditions say about the meaning of America, can be appreciated.

Part of the difficulty of including indigenous traditions in American religions is that we have lacked methods of interpretation. The disciplines of history of religions, comparative religions, and anthropology of religions, among others, have commonly been associated with the study of various native, or indigenous, traditions and have formed new and important methodologies, strategies, and insights into the religious dimensions of American life beyond textual evidences. While the study of "American religion" has tended to stress the historical development of Christian denominations as revealed in historical texts, aspects of the history of religions, for example, have emphasized a comparative framework that seeks to situate scholarly interpretations within the distinctive meanings of material existence.

The primary focus of the study of American religions has been on the immigrant people and cultures that followed the "discovery" of America. The stories of the "discovery of America" are powerful cosmogonic myths, or founding myths, that communicate the meaning of inhabiting the Americas for immigrant people. Notable explorers (in order and tied to European kingdoms) like Christopher Columbus, Hernando Cortés, Juan Ponce de León, Hernando de Soto, Jacques Cartier, Samuel de Champlain, Sir Walter Raleigh, Giovanni da Verrazano, Commodore Matthew Perry, Daniel Boone, Robert Peary, and General George Armstrong Custer as well as countless others, are regarded as culture heroes of what came to be known as the United States. They articulate the immigrant mythology of American culture. They outline a religious dynamic of inhabiting the land as immigrants in opposition to those who are indigenous. Most often the heroic deeds of discoverers and explorers came at the price of devaluing and exterminating the native inhabitants. More importantly, however, these founding mythologies of discovery have devalued an indigenous religious awareness in United States culture. More highly prized is the conquering spirit of the rugged individual rather than the warrior who is fighting in defense of family and community. In general, a religious appreciation of the environment as a sacred reality has suffered the most, as has regard for the dead and for the living spiritual beings of the earth.

The religious styles of colonizing people have usually been organized, and therefore studied, by means of sacred and secular texts, making them mobile ideologies. Native American traditions have been neglected because their religious styles are indigenous (tied to styles in which people inhabit their homes). The reconstruction of early encounters between indigenous and immigrant people has relied almost entirely on those rare inclusions of indigenous peoples in the writing of the colonists. Any attempt to include Native American religions into the field of American religion must therefore: (1) shift the definition of religion from a structure of belief or ideology to religion as an orientation to material life, in particular an orientation to the meaning of land, and thus (2) use a comparative method that can bring together both the indigenous (oral/performative) and textual spheres of the religions of the Americas, while (3) leaving room for a process of self-conscious, self-critical reflection in such a way as to (4) reveal the deep and abundant cultural exchanges that have occurred throughout American history between the distinctive communities that led to the culture of the United States.

Many Native Americans who still practice their ceremonial traditions and who are asked about their religion are quick to point out that they have none. Instead, they practice a spirituality. This is not to say they are atheistic, nor are they materialistic. On the contrary, they understand their ceremonial and spiritual practices as completely integral to the rest of their lives. The objection to religion, therefore, is that their practices cannot be distinguished from the political, economic, sexual, familial, social, cultural, and other dimensions of their lives. In fact, it is a violent misrepresentation to reduce these traditions to the category of religion because they are not practices that are easily isolatable from other aspects of human existence. Native American ceremonies are pragmatic strategies for interacting with a living world. Ceremonies address living beings who are responsible for food, healing, knowledge, and prosperity. Habitation, for indigenous people, is about forming relationships with a variety of beings, human and otherwise, who populate the world, so that they may live a happy life. These beings include water, rocks, trees, animals, birds, ancestors, stars, sun, moon, and the Creator or Great Spirit. Maintaining relationships with a host of living beings requires being constantly aware of continuous exchanges between themselves and other-than-human beings. It is often said that indigenous people are never alone. This is also an important point for communities of immigrant people, including minority communities, as well as zealous Christian, Jewish, and Muslim communities, who cannot and will not separate the "religious" from the "material" dimensions of their lives. Indeed, throughout the world an understanding of the world as saturated with spiritual beings is one of the defining characteristics of the origins of religious perception.

To the consternation of culture leaders, there persists a constant element of what might be called superstition among modern and civilized people. Active beliefs in spirits and the possibility of communicating with them, divination (or gaining knowledge from spiritual resources through tarot cards or séances, for example), and healing with hands, faith, snakes, and other spiritual means have not only persisted but seem to be thriving in some quarters. These can be seen as examples of the persistence of indigenous religious practices. Some of these practices are well organized among Haitians in New York City, or Cubans in Miami, for example, within the practice of vodou or Lukumi. Seventh-day Adventists who actively practice Mary Baker Eddy's injunction of "healing by faith alone"; Spiritualists, Pagans, and Neopagans who consult the spirits of the dead (many of those traditions that are regarded as "New Age" religions); fundamentalist and evangelical Christians, Jews, and Muslims who are actively battling the forces of the devil in their community and their country; and even Catholics and other members of mainline churches who are active in petitioning saints and other spiritual beings for healing, special consideration of their problems, and the suffering of their loved ones, and who are witness to apparitions of the Virgin Maryin this context, are all continuing indigenous religious practices. When considering religion as an active force in the development of American culture it is not helpful, therefore, to think of religion as an item of personal belief, as is made explicitly clear in American constitutional understandings and interpretations. Rather it is more useful to understand religion as a feature of material life; what Charles Long has called the "materiality of religion." To understand the transcultural expressions of religion in the United States it is vital to first understand the materiality of religion, in contrast to more conventional constructions of religion as an ideology, because only then can one appreciate how material exchanges between indigenous and immigrant communities, economic networks, and relationships with animals, landscapes, food, and so on can reveal larger "religious" realities in the formation of the United States.

A fertile ground for these methodological considerations is a reflection on distinctive meanings of inhabiting the American landscape. The meaning of land has long been considered a primary consideration for understanding Native American religions. Sacred spaces and ritual topographies have been important starting points for reflecting on the manifold meanings of these traditions. By utilizing indigenous meanings of land we can reflect on the significance of land in other forms of American religious life. In contrast to indigenous modes of occupying the Americas there have been colonial, modern, and postmodern options. Until fairly recently discussions of "sacred space" have generally been neglected in American religion. The reason for this is that immigrant religions, like Christianity for example, did not originate in the Americas. Sacred places for the religions of the globe are now foreign places in Israel, Saudi Arabia, Italy, and so on. This means that the United States has never been founded (Eliade) or revealed to immigrant populations due to their having neglected the revelations of indigenous people. Because of an immigrant emphasis on conquest, extermination of Native Americans, theories of moral and cultural superiority, enslavement of workers, and an understanding of land as private property, the meaning of inhabiting the United States remains a strange and disturbing question for most Americans.

The contentiousness of various meaningful landscapes in American religious life can be highlighted by utilizing categories of locative religions, descriptive of Native American and indigenous traditions, in contrast with utopian (from the Greek "no place") religions, descriptive of the great textual and global traditions since 1492. These modes of meaningfully occupying the Americas interact with each other, often with catastrophic results, and can be organized around issues of colonialism, industrialism, and consumerism. Although these are expressions of a modern material worldview that were initiated with the "Age of Discovery," they are also mythic ideologies that are essentially religious in nature. Thus the meanings of the material and economic valuations of the American landscape necessarily come into play, resulting in a shift of our definitions of religion away from beliefinterior to human consciousness and faith communities (or an anthropocentric understanding of religion), to religion as a set of material practices (i.e., materiality)specifically, a practice of occupying or residing on land. This follows Long's definition of religion as "orientation in the ultimate sense, that is, how one comes to terms with the ultimate significance of one's place in the world" (1986, p. 7).

A key organizing principle for a coherent and useful history of American religions is contact. Religious contact is defined by the interaction of human groups in a material context but involving a collision of cosmologies, or worldviews. Initially, cultural contact between immigrant and indigenous peoples was organized on the periphery of what is now the United States. In the Southeast, contact between Spanish conquistadores and native populations was initiated in Florida, Louisiana, and along the Mississippi River where Spaniards came into contact with densely settled areas that were reminiscent of the urban populations of central Mexico. In the Southwest, Spaniards from Florida met an enormous diversity of native cultural groups speaking a host of distinctive languages in what are now New Mexico, Arizona, and California. In the Northeast and along the eastern seaboard, Dutch, French, and English explorers came into long-term contact with various indigenous confederations of smaller tribal groups. Trading with these groups over a period of close to two hundred years led to incredible wealth among Europeans and an ongoing exchange of ideas. From these areas of contact the United States took on its unique cultural characteristics. African slaves were forced to relocate to North America to grow new kinds of plants introduced to Europeans by Native Americans. Latin Americans have the oldest communities in the United States, having come to North America with the early Spanish explorers. Over the centuries they learned to live with local native populations in areas of the Southwest. In addition, Nordic communities in Minnesota have a long history of residing in the Americas, making this a unique place in the cultural formation of the northern Midwest. French communities like New Orleans were originally colonial outposts that evolved with a unique blend of Caribbean, African, and French-Canadian influences.

The most notable arenas of cultural contact between immigrant and indigenous people have taken place in the heart of the country. Contact between the Lakota (i.e., Sioux) and the United States military in the postCivil War era, for example, resulted in the famed "Indian Wars" of the Great Plains. Colonists, gold prospectors, soldiers, and other immigrants started the westward migration across the North American continent. Standing in the way of this massive resettlement were indigenous people of a wide variety of linguistic and cultural orientations. Immigrants understood that land was to be possessed by human beings and that it was evaluated only in monetary terms. This stands in stark contrast to indigenous sensibilities, which understand that earth is a living "Mother" to human beings and other types of beings. Therefore, mining and farming (particularly with the deep-plow techniques brought by Europeans) were inconceivably violent activities for indigenous people. The collision between immigrant and indigenous communities largely involved their differing views of the land and thus its ultimate value. These conflicts had catastrophic results at Little Big Horn (called Greasy Grass by the Lakota), Wounded Knee, Sand Creek, and many other places. Such conflicts reveal that these opposing perspectives are fundamentally about religious orientations to the land, as well as political, economic, and social orientations.

But contact implies more than "cultural contact," or the interaction between humans. Of critical importance for the survival of all communities is also contact between human beings and the material world they inhabit. To explore this dimension of contact requires an assessment of both the interaction between the indigenous and immigrant groups that inhabit the Americas, and the construction and organization of their respective landscapes. One question might be: What are the material conditions of the landriverine, oceanic, forested, desert, and so onthat organize religiousness in America? Because Native American traditions are not organized by texts, sacred landscapes and ritual life are the primary data by which to understand these traditions. Immigrant religious traditions, however, have largely been studied from historical and textual perspectives. A focused phenomenological perspective could reflect on larger issues surrounding the development of religion in the United States. For example, as we have discussed, indigenous people have an understanding of their landscape as a living being that is "peopled" with a host of living beings. In contrast to that view are the built landscapes of the expansive cities in the United StatesNew York, Boston, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Saint Louis, New Orleans, San Francisco, Los Angeles. They each reflect a distinctive character that orients them to their history of migrations and to their landscapes (i.e., human and "natural" contexts). The urban environments were made possible by ideological worldviews of colonialism, mercantilism, and consumerism (to name a few). There were, however, large-scale indigenous cities on this continent well before the formation of the United States. These are most often associated with the Mississippian cultures. Remnants of their cities are found near Saint Louis and along the Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio rivers. The difference between indigenous and immigrant understandings of the built landscape can be characterized as locative and utopian. As in Mesoamerica, with which indigenous cities north of the Rio Grande have great affinity, Mississippian cities are oriented around a founding hierophany, or "manifestation of the sacred" (Eliade). These cities function fundamentally as ceremonial centers and, as a consequence, they exert enormous political and economic control over the surrounding landscape. They are locative in the sense that the city exists only with respect to the sacred realities that preexist the structures built by human beings. They are built to honor and celebrate the spiritual beings of the material world. In stark contrast the modern American city is a utopian construction. It is built as a celebration of the human spirit. Most often cities are attempts to express a perfect world that lives in the human imagination. Very little attention is paid to the living beings that preexist its current formulation. Indeed the modern American city is conceived and built at odds with the environment.

Immigrant and indigenous communities also have distinctive understandings of the medium of exchange. Throughout the history of the United States, fundamental to immigrant and utopian worldviews is a confidence in money and its power. Currency is a reflection of the United States, of its power and prestige all over the world, in valuing and evaluating all material life. Whatever other names of worldviews can be utilized to characterize a given era of the United States, money is always the common denominator that unifies the nation. But it is important to recall that money has no intrinsic value ("not worth the paper it's printed on"); its value is derived only from the symbols it holds. Yet, at the same time, money is a "total fact" of modern life. Its ability to empower and peripheralize individuals and communities is awe-inspiring. So money is the religion of the United States. It is the medium of exchange between human beings, and it undergirds a utopian vision that has been with Americans since the Pilgrims sailed to New England with the financial assistance of venture capitalists in London. Money is symbolic, "faith-based," and the basis of ideologies.

Likewise indigenous people have their own mediums of exchange. An important case of an indigenous system interacting with money is the wampum of the Haudenosaunee (better known as the Iroquois). Wampum is a worked shell bead that was manufactured along the eastern seaboard. Its colors of purple (black) and white had, and still have, cosmological significance for the Haudenosaunee. Purple is associated with the earth, the night, and the mischievous forces of creation, and white is associated with the sky, the day, and the benign forces of creation. The story of creation includes stories of the creator twins who embody these opposing forces. Wampum is also featured in the story of the founding of the Great Law of Peace that marks the beginning of the League of the Iroquois, or the Haudenosaunee, which is composed of the Seneca, Tuscarora, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, and Mohawk. Wampum has been used continuously among the Haudenosaunee in ceremonies for the harvest, for beings of the sky and earth, for the installation of chiefs and clan mothers, and for a host of other activities.

Throughout U.S. history, however, the Dutch, French, English, and Americans had a different view of wampum. It was seen as a monetary item that was used to gain access to beaver pelts. Its exchange value was directly related to the transatlantic trade in beaver pelts. This was one of the linchpins in the development of the North American continent. New York City, which was founded as New Amsterdam, could not have developed into its present form without the trade between European and Native American people in beaver pelts. For colonists, therefore, wampum was money. As money it was involved in a radically different cosmology of relations than for the Haudenosaunee. Both Europeans and Native Americans acknowledged wampum as a viable system of exchange, but for opposing reasons. For Europeans wampum was money and could be utilized to expand their colonial kingdoms. It was seen as functioning in the service of the utopian ideal of expanding a Christian empire of God. For the Haudenosaunee, wampum was a medium of exchange because it embodied the workings of cosmological understandings. It expanded the Great Law of Peace to other human communities.

An important example of a religious contact zone, a physical context that forms the basis for the generation of new religions, is the Erie Canal. Most Americans view water in marked contrast to the Haudenosaunee. Since the end of the eighteenth century there has been an aggressively dominant meaning of water. The Erie Canal, the most important major hydrological project of the early nineteenth century, was part of a canal building phase initiated in the 1820s and 1830s. The Erie Canal connected the Hudson and Mohawk rivers to Lake Erie, and was used to move remote agricultural, mining, and forestry products through New York City to the rest of the world. As envisioned by powerful bankers and merchants, the Erie Canal was an ambitious enterprise, predating the railroad, that connected New York City to the interior of the continent.

The Erie Canal's heyday corresponds directly to the era of the "Burned over District," a site of intense evangelical fervor and religious experimentation in the early nineteenth century that was said to have swept through this landscape like a brushfire. Historians of American religion cannot understand key phenomena like the Second Great Awakening and westward migration without an adequate understanding of the Burned over District. Along the banks of the canal important religious groups emerged, including the Mormons, Spiritualists, and Millerites. In contrast to the locative character of Haudenosaunee tradition, various self-conscious utopian experimental communities sprang up, including the Oneida and Shaker communities. The evangelical fervor in such New York cities as Utica, Syracuse, and Rochester likewise follows the canal. We can ask, then, what were the consequences of canalsor the industrialization of waterfor the development of American religions? In the canal zone people of various ethnic and linguistic communities from all over the world were pushed into direct contact with one another and, more importantly, into contact with a new kind of proto-industrial landscape. Russians, Irish, Poles, Africans, Italians, and others who had recently immigrated to America were dislocated, placeless people, and therefore, for reasons of survival, strained toward the realization of a utopian vision. Is a utopian religious option a consequence of an industrialization of land and water? How are American religions tied to interpretations of the landscape? Utopianism, or the formation of a perfect place, is emphasized in American religious life, but contrasts starkly with the locative emphasis of Native American traditions. This may also help explain the importance of strong millenarian elements in these religious traditions, as religious utopianism usually looks toward a transcendent vision of salvation or the perfection of human society. It likewise offers insights into the symbolic and mythic structures that have been assumed by America's economic and political institutions.

The example of religion along the Erie Canal illustrates how the landscape is fashioned to resemble a sacred world by human imagination and labor. The assumption, however, is that the landscape does not necessarily reflect a sacred reality previous to human intervention. In both indigenous and utopian contexts the landscape is understood as sacred. But these worldviews differ dramatically in how human beings understand their relation to the land. An interesting and important dimension of this comparison is transcendentalism. The transcendentalists can be seen as utopian in their emphasis on the radical disjunction of the human and "natural" worlds. While they were less concerned with "scaping" the land, a preservationist perspective is more concerned with shifting the terms of a meaningful existence from human beings to nature (devoid of humans).

As Long writes, the "myth of the New World obscured the reality of the contact [w]e know, for example, that Europeans in North America were absolutely dependent on Indian culture for several generations after their arrival. We know that North America was not a 'virgin land.' What is more important, the early European settlers knew it!" (1986, pp. 114115). More is being learned about the importance of cultural contact between indigenous and immigrant traditions in the formation of American culture. Musical styles like the blues, jazz, rock, folk, Motown, rhythm and blues, and hip-hop are all the result of cultural exchanges. Knowledge of foods in the New World transformed the Old World. Perhaps the most profound exchange, however, was the inspiration of Haudenosaunee structures of government on the development of democracy in the United States. Chiefs of the Iroquois would often sit in council with colonial leaders discussing the way to form a sensible, representative government. In 1987, the United States Congress officially thanked the Haudenosaunee for their role in forming the United States.

The legacy of cultural contact between indigenous and immigrant orientations in the development of the United States has not been a happy one, but neither has it been all bad. The Americas have been a place well suited for religious innovation and tremendous religious creativity. This is not likely to change. Many of the leading intellectuals of the nineteenth century were certain that as human beings progressed they would no longer need religion. None would have predicted, at that time, that religion would play as vital a role in American life as it does today. Material conditions of the past, including cultural contact, geography, and economics, have crafted the unique religious character of the United States.


For an understanding of a history of religions approach to this topic read: Davíd Carrasco, Religions of Mesoamerica: Cosmovision and Ceremonial Centers (San Francisco, 1990); Charles H. Long, Significations: Signs, Symbols, and Images in the Interpretation of Religion (Philadelphia, 1986); Mircea Eliade, Myth of the Eternal Return, or, Cosmos and History, translated by Willard R. Trask (New York, 1954; rev. ed., 1965), and Patterns in Comparative Religion, translated by Rosemary Sheed (New York, 1958); Rudolf Otto, The Idea of the Holy: An Inquiry into the Non-rational Factor in the Idea of the Divine and Its Relation to the Rational, translated by John W. Harvey (London, 1923; 2d ed., 1950); and Jonathan Z. Smith, Map Is Not Territory: Studies in the History of Religions (Leiden, 1978).

For works on Native American religions read: William Cronon, Changes in the Land: Indians, Colonists, and the Ecology of New England (New York, 1983); Alfred Crosby, Ecological Imperialism: The Biological Expansion of Europe, 9001900 (Cambridge, U.K., 1986; 2d ed., 2004); Vine Deloria Jr., God Is Red: A Native View of Religion (New York, 1973; 3d ed., Golden, Colo., 2003); Raymond DeMallie, ed., The Sixth Grandfather: Black Elk's Teachings Given to John G. Neihardt (Lincoln, Neb., 1984); G. Peter Jemison and Anna Schein, eds., The Treaty of Canandaigua, 1794: Two Hundred Years of Treaty Relations between the Iroquois Confederacy and the United States (Santa Fe, N.Mex., 2000); Donald Grinde Jr. and Bruce Johansen, Ecocide of Native America: Environmental Destruction of Indian Lands and Peoples (Santa Fe, N.Mex., 1995); Francis Jennings, The Invasion of America: Indians, Colonialism, and the Cant of Conquest (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1975); Oren Lyons et al., Exiled in the Land of the Free: Democracy, Indian Nations, and the U.S. Constitution (Santa Fe, N.Mex., 1992); John Neihardt, Black Elk Speaks: Being the Life Story of a Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux (New York, 1932); Tzvetan Todorov, The Conquest of America: The Question of the Other, translated by Richard Howard (New York, 1984); Paul A. W. Wallace, White Roots of Peace: The Iroquois Book of Life (Philadelphia, 1946); and Jace Weaver, ed., Defending Mother Earth: Native American Perspectives on Environmental Justice (Maryknoll, N.Y., 1996).

For works on religion and nature and the Burned over District read: Catherine Albanese, Nature Religion in America: From the Algonkian Indians to the New Age (Chicago, 1990); Michael Barkun, Crucible of the Millennium: The Burned-over District of New York in the 1840s (Syracuse, N.Y., 1986); David Chidester and Edward T. Linenthal, eds., American Sacred Space (Bloomington, Ind., 1995); Whitney Cross, The Burned-over District: The Social and Intellectual History of Enthusiastic Religion in Western New York, 18001850 (New York, 1950); and Neal Salisbury, Manitou and Providence: Indians, Europeans, and the Making of New England, 15001643 (New York, 1982).

For works on religion and American economics read: William Leach, Land of Desire: Merchants, Power, and the Rise of a New American Culture (New York, 1993); Wolfgang Schivelbusch, Tastes of Paradise: A Social History of Spices, Stimulants, and Intoxicants, translated by David Jacobson (New York, 1992), and The Railway Journey: The Industrialization of Time and Space in the 19th Century (Berkeley, 1986); and Leigh Eric Schmidt, Consumer Rites: The Buying and Selling of American Holidays (Princeton, 1995).

Philip P. Arnold (2005)

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Transculturation and Religion: Religion in the Formation of the Modern United States

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