Chapter

The Rapture in America

Amy Johnson Frykholm

in Rapture Culture

Published in print March 2004 | ISBN: 9780195159837
Published online July 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780199835614 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195159837.003.0002
 The Rapture in America

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Examines the history of the idea of the rapture in American Protestantism and argues that belief in the rapture, although it has fundamentalist origins, needs to be understood as a much broader social movement and a much more integrated part of American culture. Looks briefly at the apocalyptic context of American culture and then at the more specific history of rapture belief and dispensationalism in the United States. Argues that readers of the Left Behind series no longer see themselves as intimately connected to fundamentalist belief but instead seek to integrate the rapture into a broader religious context. Similarly, the texts of the novels themselves do not so much condemn and dismiss contemporary culture as they seek negotiation with it, particularly in the roles of technology, consumer culture, and gender in society. The formulation of evangelicalism represented in the books is a significant departure from previous religious apocalyptic fiction.

Keywords: Rapture; Fundamentalism; Dispensationalism; Technology; Consumer culture; Gender; Evangelicalism; Apocalypticism; Left Behind

Chapter.  10682 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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