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American ReligionContemporary Trends$
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Mark Chaves

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691146850

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691146850.001.0001

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(p.110) 9 Conclusion
American Religion

Mark Chaves

Princeton University Press

This concluding chapter argues that based on the religious trends documented in this book, no indicator of traditional religious belief or practice is going up. There is much continuity and some decline. There is more religious diversity, there are shifting fortunes for liberal and conservative Protestant denominations, and there are troubling signs about the state of religious leadership. Moreover, changes are occurring inside congregations, and there is a tighter connection between religious service attendance and political, social, and religious conservatism. There is also more diffuse spirituality, but this diffuse spirituality should not be mistaken for an increase in traditional religiosity. As such, if there is a trend, it is toward less religion.

Keywords:   religious trends, traditional religious belief, religious diversity, Protestant denominations, religious leadership, congregations, religious service attendance, conservatism, diffuse spirituality, traditional religiosity

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