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Church and SocietyThe Laurence J. McGinley Lectures, 1988-2007$
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Avery Cardinal Dulles

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780823228621

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: March 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fso/9780823228621.001.0001

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Catholicism and American Culture

Catholicism and American Culture

The Uneasy Dialogue

December 6–7, 1988

(p.27) 3 Catholicism and American Culture
Church and Society

Avery Cardinal Dulles

Fordham University Press

This chapter examines the encounter between faith and American culture, looking into different layers of culture and strategies for encounter. The analysis begins with a brief discussion of the nature of the American culture into which the Catholic faith might be inserted. The importance of an encounter between faith and culture has been a major theme of the present pontificate. In the Catholic literature on American culture published in the past twenty years or so, it is possible to detect four major strategies: traditionalism, neoconservatism, liberalism, and prophetic radicalism. The most fundamental question raised in the discussion is whether the Church in the country should become more countercultural, as the traditionalists and radicals would wish, or more accommodationist, as the liberals and some neoconservatives propose.

Keywords:   American culture, traditionalism, neoconservatism, liberalism, prophetic radicalism, Catholicism

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