Throughout the 1840s, numerous intentional communities based on a cooperative financial model were organized across the United States. Primarily led by social reformers and often based on the writings of French utopian Charles Fourier, these communities acted as a response to social and economic inequity. As part of their challenge to nineteenth-century social conventions, these communities refrained from including any religious test or expectation of religious adherence for members. The result was the development of spaces where new religious movements and diverse religious expressions emerged, sometimes resulting in communal strife. This article argues that diverse religious expressions were cultivated across these communities, if unevenly. The article highlights three case studies in which religious expression proved a central component of communal organization, social harmony, or community discord. These communities include Trumbull Phalanx in Ohio, Northampton Association of Education and Industry in Massachusetts, and Ceresco in Wisconsin.
Research Article| November 01 2019
“All is Harmony in that Department”: Religious Expressions within the Fourierist Communal Experiments of the 1840s
Nova Religio (2019) 23 (2): 18–41.
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Amy Hart; “All is Harmony in that Department”: Religious Expressions within the Fourierist Communal Experiments of the 1840s. Nova Religio 1 November 2019; 23 (2): 18–41. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/nr.2019.23.2.18
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