Religion, Genealogy, and the Study of American Religions


  • L. Benjamin Rolsky Independent



Genealogy, Charles H. Long, Theory and Method, Religion, Theory, History


This article serves as one of four responses to Dana Logan's 2017 JAAR article entitled, "Lean Closet: Asceticism in Postindustrial Consumer Culture." It investigates the value of genealogical method for the field of American religious history and establishes both benefits and drawbacks to its application.

Author Biography

  • L. Benjamin Rolsky, Independent

    Dr. L. Benjamin Rolsky received his PhD from Drew University in American Religious Studies. His work has appeared in a variety of popular and academic venues including Method and Theory in the Study of Religion and the Journal of the American Academy of Religion as well as The Christian Century, The Marginalia Review of Books, and the Religion and Culture Forum at the University of Chicago. His research and teaching interests include religion and politics, the study of popular culture, and critical theory. Rolsky is currently completing a manuscript entitled, Norman Lear and the Spiritual Politics of Religious Liberalism, which is under contract with Columbia University Press. Once complete, he plans to begin research on a second book project that examines the history of the Christian Right across the 20th century.


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How to Cite

Rolsky, L. B. (2019). Religion, Genealogy, and the Study of American Religions. Bulletin for the Study of Religion, 47(3-4), 3-7.