Nancy T. Ammerman
PhD, Yale University (1983)
Sociology 260B | 617.358.0634 | email@example.com
BIO AND RESEARCH
Dr. Nancy Ammerman has spent much of the last decade studying American congregations. Her most recent book, Pillars of Faith: American Congregations and their Partners (University of California Press, 2005), describes the common patterns that shape the work of American’s diverse communities of faith. Her 1997 book, Congregation and Community, tells the stories of twenty-three congregations that encountered various forms of neighborhood change in communities around the country. Along with a team of others, she edited and contributed to Studying Congregations: A New Handbook, published in 1998 by Abingdon. Prior to her work on congregations, she wrote extensively on conservative religious movements, including Bible Believers: Fundamentalists in the Modern World, a study of an independent Baptist church in New England, and Baptist Battles: Social Change and Religious Conflict in the Southern Baptist Convention, which received the 1992 Distinguished Book award from the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion.
Nancy has also been active in attempting to educate a larger public audience about American religion. In 1993, she served on the panel of experts convened by the U. S. Departments of Justice and Treasury to make recommendations in light of the government’s confrontation with the Branch Davidians at Waco. In 1995, she testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the same subject, and in 1997 she lectured in Israel under sponsorship of the U. S. State Department.
Prof. Ammerman’s current research, funded by the Templeton Foundation, is the “Spiritual Narratives in Everyday Life” project. Begun in the summer of 2006, it is exploring whether and how religious belief and action are present in the stories people tell about their everyday lives. Participants in Boston and Atlanta were selected to represent a cross-section of religious traditions (as well as non-religious people). They participated in an initial oral religious life history interview, and researchers observed their religious communities (for those involved in a church or synagogue). They also kept an oral diary for two one-week periods and photographed important places in their lives. Their stories about those places proved critical to understanding how religion is present in these particular modern lives. For more information, click here.
2010. Review of Telling Stories: The Use of Personal Narratives in the Social Sciences and History, by Mary Jo Maynes, Jennifer L. Pierce, and Barbara Laslett. Contemporary Sociology 39(1):64-65.
2009. “American Evangelicals in American Culture: Continuity and Change.” Pp. 44-73 in Evangelicals and Democracy in America, edited by Steven Brint and Jean Reith Schroedel. New York: Russel Sage Foundation.
2009. “Congregations: local, social, and religious.” Pp. 562-80 in Oxford Handbook of the Sociology of Religion, edited by Peter B. Clarke. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press.
2009. Review of Faith Makes Us Live, by Margarita Mooney. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 48(4):825-26.
2009. Review of A Sociology of Spirituality, edited by Kieran Flanagan and Peter Jupp. Review of Religious Research 51(2):223-24.