Review of Religious Research

, Volume 59, Issue 1, pp 117–118 | Cite as

Paul D. Numrich and Elfriede Wedam: Religion and Community in the New Urban America

Oxford University Press, 2015, ISBN: 9780199386857
  • Katie Day
Book Review

This book builds on a small but growing niche within urban studies that challenges the invisibility of religion in understanding how cities work. The two researchers bring credibility and depth to this longitudinal study of religion in Chicago. They were original members of the Religion in Urban America Program that gathered data from over 100 congregations (and more intensively from 55) between 1993 and 1998 which resulted in the publication of Public Religion and Urban Transformation: Faith in the City (2000), edited by Lowell Livezey. After his untimely death in 2007, Livezey’s quest to understand and recover religion within the examination of the urban ecology has continued to inspire Numrich and Wedam (as well as a number of other scholars of urban religion).

The theoretical foundation which undergirds the study is the Chicago School of Robert Park and Ernest Burgess from the 1920’s. The Chicago School’s approach to urban analysis was spatial and drew on the metaphor of ecology,...

Copyright information

© Religious Research Association, Inc. 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Lutheran Theological Seminary at PhiladelphiaPhiladelphiaUSA

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