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Class Differences In Attitudes About Business, Economics, And Social Welfare Among Indianapolis Catholics And Protestants

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents data from a five-year study of religion and community life in Indianapolis, IN, to examine the impact of contemporary class differences on how residents who identify themselves as members of local Roman Catholic and Protestant congregations think about economics and social welfare policies in their city. Class is still a significant component of American religion. This chapter shows the various ways in which it is significant is itself a complex story. The data presented in the chapter shows Catholics and Protestants alike can be quite schizophrenic in their desire to help the poor and their relative unwillingness to tamper with business and economic structures. Moreover, there can be unforeseen similarities in attitudes between those who are the more privileged in each class and those who are on the receiving end of the corporate or factory hierarchy.

Keywords: American religion; Catholics; class differences; Indianapolis; Protestants



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