Why Liberals Win the Culture Wars

(Even When They Lose Elections):
The Battles That Define America from Jefferson's Heresies to Gay Marriage

In this timely, carefully reasoned social history of the United States, the New York Times bestselling author of Religious Literacy and God Is Not One places today’s heated culture wars within the context of a centuries-long struggle of right versus left and religious versus secular to reveal how, ultimately, liberals always win.

Though they may seem to be dividing the country irreparably, today’s heated cultural and political battles between right and left, Progressives and Tea Party, religious and secular are far from unprecedented. In this engaging and important work, Stephen Prothero reframes the current debate, viewing it as the latest in a number of flashpoints that have shaped our national identity.

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Recent Books

The American Bible Whose America Is This?

The American Bible Whose America Is This? is a provocative crash course in the great “American scriptures” — those texts that have both divided and 

In God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run the World,

In God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run the World, New York Times bestselling author of Religious Literacy and religion scholar Prothero argues that persistent 

Religious Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know --And Doesn't,

Religious Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know --And Doesn't, The United States is one of the most religious places on earth, but it is also a nation of shocking religious illiteracy. 

A Nation of Religions

A Nation of Religions The United States has long been described as a nation of immigrants, but it is also a nation of religions in which Muslims and Methodists, Buddhists 

American Jesus

American Jesus: How the Son of God Became a National Icon Jesus the Black Messiah; Jesus the Jew; Jesus the Hindu sage; Jesus the Haight-Asbury hippie: these Jesuses join the 

Purified by Fire

Purified by Fire: A History of Cremation in America tells the fascinating story of cremation's rise from notoriety to legitimacy and takes a provocative new look at important transformations 

interviews

Stephen Prothero has commented on National Public Radio programs, and on television on CNN, NBC, MSNBC, FOX, and PBS. He was also a guest on “The Colbert Report,” "The Daily Show" with Jon Stewart and "The Oprah Winfrey Show." 

The Colbert Report, Comedy Central
Stephen Prothero, discusses his book, God Is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run the World with Stephen Colbert.

The Daily Show with Jon Stewert, Comedy Central
Stephen Prothero discusees his book Religious Literacy with host Jon Stewert and suggests that our politicians learn about comparative religions.

writing
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reviews

"Religious Literacy" in New York Times Book Review
"Knowing Not" by Mark Oppenheimer (June 10, 2007): "Prothero’s corrective proceeds in two parts. First, he offers a diagnosis: a 100-page précis of American religious history that tells a familiar story, from the Puritans to today’s pluralism, remarkably well. He also argues, persuasively, that both conservatives and liberals are to blame for American religious illiteracy."

"Religious Literacy" in America
"Take the Test" by John A. Coleman, S.J. I'm grateful to John A. Coleman, SJ, for attending to the historical arguments of my book in "Take the Test" (April 30, 2007). "In a deft historical excursus," he writes, "Prothero shows how during the 19th and 20th centuries religion in America morphed from intellect to feeling; from doctrine to story telling; from the Bible as such to Jesus; from theology to morality."

"Religious Literacy" in San Francisco Chronicle
In "Faith Without the Facts," Jean E. Barker, calls Religious Literacy "a critical addition to the debate about Americans' civic education." The book's argument, she adds, is "compelling and persasively presented" and its Dictionary of Religious Literacy "readable and sometimes entertaining" (April 8, 2007).