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A Home for the Outcasts: An Analysis of Christian Rock as an Expression of Postmodern Christianity

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A Home for the Outcasts: An Analysis of Christian Rock as an Expression of Postmodern Christianity
Klugh, John Paul
Christian rock music has a rich history in Evangelical culture, providing believers with a unique form of popular music created by those who share their religious identity. Although the scene has changed significantly over time, it is still analyzed as a sui generis phenomenon with a fixed essence. This thesis presents a new framework for studying Christian rock by adopting a social constructionist approach to demonstrate how the meaning of “Christian rock” has evolved in response to shifting power relations. Building on this framework, this thesis delves into the spiritual significance of Christian rock for fans and performers by shedding light on a movement within the scene for Evangelicals who feel alienated from mainstream churches and are seeking alternative expressions of their faith. In particular, Christian rock events, such as the Cornerstone Festival, offer these individuals a safe space to explore alternative expressions that may not be available in traditional Evangelical settings while remaining within the protective cocoon of the Evangelical nomos. As such, they serve as a rite of passage for young people as they navigate the challenges of growing up and transitioning into new phases of their lives. By contextualizing the Christian rock scene within the broader trend of Americans distancing themselves from organized religion in favor of more individualized expressions of faith, Christian rock emerges not just as a small subculture, but as a powerful cultural force that offers valuable insight into broader religious and cultural trends in America.
Christian Rock
New Religious Movements
Social Constructionism
Johnston, Lucas F (advisor)
Ilesanmi, Simeon O (committee member)
Neal, Lynn S (committee member)
2023-07-25T17:48:35Z (accessioned)
2023-07-25T17:48:35Z (available)
2023 (issued)
Religion (discipline)
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/102242 (uri)
en (iso)
Wake Forest University

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