Understanding Religious-Organizational Marketization: The Case of the United States Mainline

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Abstract

Past decades have witnessed an accelerating proliferation of managerial and market-associated discourses and imperatives across the traditional religious-organizational field. Based on theoretical perspectives on marketization, this article outlines a general analytical framework by which to approach, empirically investigate, and understand processes of organizational marketization as they unfold in contemporary religious-organizational settings. As illustrated by more recent developments among the Protestant mainline denominations in the United States, the article (1) provides a general sociological explanation for the primary reasons why processes of organizational marketization have been set in motion within the US mainline; (2) outlines the main ways and means by which such processes have tended to unfold; and (3) accounts for their main practical effects on current mainline organizational cultures and working routines.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Religion
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Mainline Churches
  • discourse
  • marketization of religion
  • religious organizations

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