Religious Studies | American Catholicism
R338 | 20969 | Weaver


I have taught this course many different ways, always aiming toward
some kind of coherence.  This spring (probably the last time I will
teach R338), I have decided to focus less on coherence and more on
books that I like and find provocative or stimulating.  I am listing
the books here with full ordering information and urge you to look
on amazon.com and other places for used copies (often pretty cheap).

Required texts:
1. Clyde F. Crews, American and Catholic:  A Popular History of
Catholicism in the United States.  St. Anthony Messenger Press, 1994
[ISBN:  0-86716-175-2]

2. Mary J. Oates, The Catholic Philanthropic Tradition in America.
Indiana University Press, 1995.  [ISBN 0-253-34159-0]

3. Mark S. Massa, Catholics and American Culture:  Fulton Sheen,
Dorothy Day, and the Notre Dame Football Team.  Crossroad, 1999
[ISBN:  0-8245-1955-8]

4. John J. Fialka, Sisters:  Catholic Nuns and the Making of
America.  St. Martinís Griffin Press, 2003. [ISBN:  0-312-32596-7]

5. Donald B. Cozzens, The Changing Face of the Priesthood.
Liturgical Press, 2000. [ISBN: 0-8146-2504-5]

6. Ursula King, Spirit of Fire:  The Life and Vision of Teilhard de
Chardin. Orbis Books,  1996  [ISBN:  1-57075-177-3]

Course requirements: Approximately 100 pages/week and probable
weekly reading quizzes. Attendance required.  Mid-term and final
exams.  Short paper.  I will fill in the blanks as much as I can
during lecture, but expect students to use web sites and the library
(encyclopedias, e.g.) to look of things they do not understand.

Generally the course has these themes:
1. A brief overview of the story (Crews); an easy read.

2. Social reform (RC vs Prot) 1880-1925 (Moloney); difficult book

3. Catholicism in the 1950s (Massa); challenging.

4. A Nunsí-eye view of the American Catholic story (Fialka).  Easy
read

5. Sexuality (Kennedy) provocative text.

6. Catholicism and science (King) just for the fun of it.
Challenging