WorldCat Identities

Stark, Rodney

Works: 134 works in 656 publications in 7 languages and 26,960 library holdings
Genres: History  Church history 
Roles: Author
Classifications: BL221, 200
Publication Timeline
Most widely held works by Rodney Stark
Christian beliefs and anti-Semitism by Charles Y Glock( Book )

21 editions published between 1966 and 1979 in English and held by 1,601 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Discovering God : the origins of the great religions and the evolution of belief by Rodney Stark( Book )

14 editions published between 2007 and 2014 in English and Italian and held by 1,418 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Discovering God is a monumental history of the origins of the great religions from the Stone Age to the Modern Age. Sociologist Rodney Stark surveys the birth and growth of religions around the world from the prehistoric era of primal beliefs; the history of the pyramids found in Iraq, Egypt, Mexico, and Cambodia; and the great "Axial Age" of Plato, Zoroaster, Confucius, and the Buddha, to the modern Christian missions and the global spread of Islam. He argues for a free-market theory of religion and for the controversial thesis that under the best, unimpeded conditions, the true, most authentic religions will survive and thrive. Among his many conclusions: Despite decades of faulty reports that early religions were crude muddles of superstition, it turns out that primitive humans had surprisingly sophisticated notions about God and Creation. The idea of "sin" appeared suddenly in the sixth century BCE and quickly reshaped religious ideas from Europe to China. Some major world religions seem to lack any plausible traces of divine inspiration. Ironically, some famous figures who attempted to found "Godless" religions ended up being worshiped as gods. - Publisher
The victory of reason : how Christianity led to freedom, capitalism, and Western success by Rodney Stark( Book )

26 editions published between 2005 and 2007 in 3 languages and held by 1,369 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Many books have been written about the success of the West, analyzing why Europe was able to pull ahead of the rest of the world by the end of the Middle Ages. Here, sociologist Stark advances a revolutionary, controversial idea: that Christianity and its related institutions are, in fact, directly responsible for the most significant intellectual, political, scientific, and economic breakthroughs of the past millennium. In Stark's view, what has propelled the West is not the tension between secular and nonsecular society, nor the pitting of science and the humanities against religious belief. Christian theology, Stark asserts, is the very font of reason: While the world's other great belief systems emphasized mystery, obedience, or introspection, Christianity alone embraced logic and reason as the path toward enlightenment, freedom, and progress.--From publisher description
For the glory of God : how monotheism led to reformations, science, witch-hunts, and the end of slavery by Rodney Stark( Book )

16 editions published between 2003 and 2015 in English and Italian and held by 1,237 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Ideas about God, argues Rodney Stark, have shaped the history & culture of the West. He examines the Reformation, the rise of science, witch-hunts & the abolition of slavery to demonstrate his case
The churching of America, 1776-1990 : winners and losers in our religious economy by Roger Finke( Book )

16 editions published between 1992 and 2006 in English and held by 1,149 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

In this provocative book, Roger Finke and Rodney Stark challenge popular perceptions about American religion. They view the religious environment as a free market economy, where churches compete for souls. The story they tell is one of gains for upstart sects and losses for mainline denominations. Although many Americans assume that religious participation has declined in America, Finke and Stark present a different picture. In 1776, fewer than 1 in 5 Americans were active in church affairs. Today, church membership includes about 6 out of 10 people. But, as Finke and Stark show, not all denominations benefited from this growth. They explain how and why the leading eighteenth-century churches began their descent, while two newcomer sects, the Baptists and the Methodists, gained ground. They also analyze why the Methodists then began a long, downward slide, why the Baptists continued to succeed, how the Catholic Church met the competition of ardent Protestant missionaries, and why the Catholic commitment has declined since Vatican II. The authors also explain why ecumenical movements always fail. In short, Americans are not abandoning religion; they have been moving away from established denominations. A "sect-church process" is always under way, Finke and Stark argue, as successful churches lose their organizational vigor and are replaced by less worldly groups. Some observers assert that the rise in church membership rates indicates increased participation, not increased belief. Finke and Stark challenge this as well. They find that those groups that have gained the greatest numbers have demanded that their followers accept traditional doctrines and otherworldliness. They argue that religious organizations can thrive only when they comfort souls and demand sacrifice. When theology becomes too logical, or too secular, it loses people
God's battalions : the case for the Crusades by Rodney Stark( Book )

18 editions published between 2009 and 2015 in 3 languages and held by 1,100 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

In God's Battalions, award-winning author Rodney Stark takes on the long-held view that the Crusades were the first round of European colonialism, conducted for land, loot, and converts by barbarian Christians who victimized the cultivated Muslims. Instead, Stark argues that the Crusades were the first military response to Muslim terrorist aggession
The future of religion : secularization, revival, and cult formation by Rodney Stark( Book )

14 editions published between 1984 and 1985 in English and held by 1,086 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Religion is alive and well in the modern world, and the social-scientific study of religion is undergoing a renaissance. For much of this century, respected social theorists predicted the death of religion as inevitable consequence of science, education, and modern economics. But they were wrong. Stark and Bainbridge set out to explain the survival of religion. Using information derived from numerous surveys, censuses, historical case studies, and ethnographic field expeditions, they chart the full sweep of contemporary religion from the traditional denominations to the most fervent cults. This wealth of information is located within a coherent theoretical framework that examines religion as a social response to human needs, both the general needs shared by all and the desires specific to those who are denied the economic rewards or prestige enjoyed by the privileged. By explaining the forms taken by religions today, Stark and Bainbridge allow us to understand its persistence in a secular age and its prospects for the future.--Publisher description
Religion and society in tension by Charles Y Glock( Book )

30 editions published between 1965 and 1973 in English and Spanish and held by 1,029 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

One true God : historical consequences of monotheism by Rodney Stark( Book )

17 editions published between 2001 and 2009 in 3 languages and held by 925 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"Western history would be unrecognizable had it not been for people who believed in One True God. There would have been wars, but no religious wars. There would have been moral codes, but no Commandments. Had the Jews been polytheists, they would today be only another barely remembered people, less important, but just as extinct as the Babylonians. Had Christians presented Jesus to the Greco-Roman world as "another" God, their faith would long since have gone the way of Mithraism. And surely Islam would never have made it out of the desert had Muhammad not removed Allah from the context of Arab paganism and proclaimed him as the only God." "The three great monotheisms changed everything. Rodney Stark explains how and why monotheism has such immense power both to unite and to divide. Why and how did Jews, Christians, and Muslims missionize, and when and why did their efforts falter? Why did both Christianity and Islam suddenly become less tolerant of Jews late in the eleventh century, prompting outbursts of mass murder? Why were the Jewish massacres by Christians concentrated in the cities along the Rhine River, and why did the pogroms by Muslims take place mainly in Granada? How could the Jews persist so long as a minority faith, able to withstand intense pressures to convert? Why did they sometimes assimilate? In the final chapter, Stark also exmaines the American experience to show that it is possible for committed monotheists to sustain norms of civility toward one another." "A sweeping social history of religion, One True God shows how the great monotheisms shaped the past and created the modern world."--Jacket
Sociology by Rodney Stark( Book )

51 editions published between 1985 and 2010 in 3 languages and held by 872 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"Sociology is truly a classic introductory text which introduces students to the methods and theories of sociology using Rodney Stark's hallmark 'Over the Shoulder of a professional sociologist' approach, presenting sociology on a personal level. Stark describes what sociologists do and how they do it, focusing first on the questions they pose and how they search for and formulate their answers, and then moving on to study their answers and conclusions. In this way, he effectively explores themes, raising issues in a straightforward manner with historical accuracy and solid research. The text employs a unique feature titled 'A Closer View,' which illustrates seminal research studies to introduce students to the sociological imagination and the world around them." -- Publisher's description
Patterns of religious commitment by Rodney Stark( Book )

11 editions published between 1968 and 1970 in English and held by 845 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Cities of God : the real story of how Christianity became an urban movement and conquered Rome by Rodney Stark( Book )

12 editions published between 2006 and 2014 in English and held by 735 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

How did the preaching of a peasant carpenter from Galilee spark a movement that would grow to include over two billion followers? Who listened to this "good news," and who ignored it? Where did Christianity spread, and how? Based on quantitative data and the latest scholarship, scholar Stark presents new and startling information about the rise of the early church, overturning many prevailing views of how Christianity grew through time to become the largest religion in the world. By analyzing concrete data, Stark is able to challenge the conventional wisdom about early Christianity, offering the clearest picture ever of how this religion grew from its humble beginnings into the faith of more than one-third of the world's population.--From publisher description
What Americans really believe : new findings from the Baylor surveys of religion by Rodney Stark( Book )

6 editions published in 2008 in English and held by 680 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"A shocking snapshot of the most current impulses in American religion. Rodney Stark reports the surprising findings of the 2007 Baylor Surveys of Religion, a follow up to the 2005 survey revealing most Americans believe in God or a higher power. This new volume highlights even more hot-button issues of religious life in our country. A must-read for anyone interested in Americans' religious beliefs and practices."--Publisher's description
Acts of faith : explaining the human side of religion by Rodney Stark( Book )

22 editions published between 2000 and 2007 in English and Chinese and held by 636 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"The authors offer a new, comprehensive paradigm for the social scientific study of religion. The book sets out to explain *why* people are religious and have the need to be religious, without discrediting organized religions as something foolish or irrational".--Résumé de l'éditeur
Wayward shepherds: prejudice and the Protestant clergy( Book )

5 editions published in 1971 in English and held by 611 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

The triumph of Christianity : how the Jesus movement became the world's largest religion by Rodney Stark( Book )

12 editions published between 2011 and 2014 in English and held by 604 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"Religious historian and sociologist Rodney Stark has spent his career engaging with that very question. Indeed, after thirty highly regarded books on the matter, he has created a true master course in Christian history. Now, for the first time, he distills his research to just the most important and interesting episodes--the seminal moments in the story that, he now believes, demand new perspectives. Stark gets right to the events of greatest interest, often turning them on their heads: He argues that Constantine's conversion did the Church a great deal of harm, for example, and that the majority of converts to early Christianity were women. And he asks the questions at the heart of the human story: What role did Jesus's family play in the early Church? How was Christianity's rise influenced by the misery of daily life in Greco-Roman cities? What role did vigorous competition play in the success, and failure, of churches in colonial America? Finally, having brought readers to the present day, Stark makes a compelling case that the popular notion that religion must disappear to make room for modernity is amply disproved by the sociological evidence. No one is better equipped than Rodney Stark to get to the heart of the story that has shaped two millennia's worth of history. For scholars and armchair historians alike, The Triumph of Christianity is a brisk and thought-provoking journey through events we think we know--and need to reconsider"--
The churching of America, 1776-2005 : winners and losers in our religious economy by Roger Finke( Book )

18 editions published between 2005 and 2008 in English and held by 412 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

In The Churching of America, 1776-2005 Roger Finke and Rodney Stark once again revolutionize the way we think about religion in America. Extending the argument that the nation's religious environment acts as a free market economy, this extensively revised and expanded edition offers new research, statistics, and stories that document increased participation in religious groups in the twenty-first century. Adding to the through coverage of "mainline" religious groups, new chapters chart the remarkable development and growth of African American churches from the early nineteenth century forward. Finke and Stark show how, like other "upstart sects," these churches openly competed for adherents and demonstrate how American norms of religious freedom allowed African American churches to construct organizational havens with little outside intervention. This edition also includes new sections on the ethnic religious communities of recent immigrants-stories that echo those told of ethnic religious enclaves in the nineteenth century. Bringing together timely new information and evidence, this provocative book insists, more than ever, on a major reevaluation of established ideas about American religious institutions. Written with lively prose, it will stir debate within church and academic communities, as well as among laypersons interested in the history of religion in America
The rise of Mormonism by Rodney Stark( Book )

10 editions published in 2005 in English and held by 367 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"This new work, the first to collect Rodney Stark's influential writings on the Mormon church, includes previously published essays, revised and rewritten for this volume. His work sheds light on both the growth of Mormonism and on how and why certain religions continue to grow while others fade away."--Jacket
How the West won : the neglected story of the triumph of modernity by Rodney Stark( Book )

11 editions published between 2014 and 2015 in English and held by 313 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"In this page-turning, myth-busting history, acclaimed author Rodney Stark shows exactly why Western civilization triumphed over other cultures?and why we all should be thankful it did." -- from publisher's website
moreShow More Titles
fewerShow Fewer Titles
Audience Level
Audience Level
  Kids General Special  
Audience level: 0.29 (from 0.07 for The church ... to 0.65 for Are missio ...)

The victory of reason : how Christianity led to freedom, capitalism, and Western success
Alternative Names
Luo De Ni Si Da Ke 1934-

Luodeni Sidake 1934-

Rodney Stark Amerikaans schrijver

Rodney Stark amerikansk författare

Rodney Stark amerikansk skribent

Rodney Stark sociologo, scrittore e accademico statunitense

Rodney Stark US-amerikanischer Religionssoziologe

Sidake, Luodeni 1934-

Stark, Rodney William 1934-

رادنی استارک نویسنده آمریکایی

스타크, 로드니


斯达克, 罗德尼 1934-


罗德尼斯达克 1934-

The victory of reason : how Christianity led to freedom, capitalism, and Western successFor the glory of God : how monotheism led to reformations, science, witch-hunts, and the end of slaveryThe churching of America, 1776-1990 : winners and losers in our religious economyGod's battalions : the case for the CrusadesThe future of religion : secularization, revival, and cult formationOne true God : historical consequences of monotheismSociologyPatterns of religious commitment