Chapter 7. Denominations

  1. Philip Goff Director Professor
  1. Russell E. Richey Senior Fellow

Published Online: 16 APR 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9781444324082.ch7

The Blackwell Companion to Religion in America

The Blackwell Companion to Religion in America

How to Cite

Richey, R. E. (2010) Denominations, in The Blackwell Companion to Religion in America (ed P. Goff), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444324082.ch7

Editor Information

  1. Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis, USA

Author Information

  1. Emory University, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 16 APR 2010
  2. Published Print: 23 APR 2010

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405169363

Online ISBN: 9781444324082



  • “denomination,” “denominations” and/or “denominationalism”;
  • denominationalism imaged - web denunciation, fundamentalist or fringe movements, mainstream religion and secular press;
  • end to denominations and denominationalism;
  • pluralism of American society - religious conservatism and their own weakness and internal divisions;
  • long-term trends and macro-patterns - assessment angles;
  • reimagining denominationalism and denominations;
  • shape and style of individual denominations - perspective on current negative appraisals;
  • Christian Church, as denomination - for most, if not all, of its life in North America;
  • denomination, modern, Western voluntaristic or willed religious (once an ecclesial) body;
  • Post-Christian denominationalism - inchoate character of post-Christian stage indicated


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Denominationalism Imaged

  • An End to Denominations and Denominationalism?

  • Reimagining Denominationalism and Denominations

  • Defining the Denomination

  • The Denominational Field: A Brief Retrospective

  • Stages, Continuing Patterns, Phases

  • Bibliography