​2018 Spring Campus Book Discussion: Hillbilly Elegy

Chapter 6

Chapter 6 discusses how the author’s mother gets caught up in a scam to go to New York so that Lindsay, Vance’s sister, can become a model. The failure of this dream to pan out causes Vance to ask his grandmother if God loved them.   This leads to a discussion of what religion and faith looked like to this family and this community.  Vance’s mother’s relationships and marriages to different men cause Vance to question his identity.  It is his relationship with his biological father that exposes him to the ideals of conservative Protestantism.   Vance explores the role religion plays in his life as well as how it helps address the pain of feeling fatherless. 

Key quote:  “Religious institutions remain a positive force in people’s lives, but in a part of the country slammed by the decline of manufacturing, joblessness, addiction, and broken homes, church attendance has fallen off.  Dad’s church offered something desperately needed by people like me”  (94).

Religion and Prosperity

How Religion Contributes To Wealth And Poverty

Food for Thought

Is religion important in American society?  What role does it play and what is its impact?

If religion is no longer important, what other cultural norms hold us together as a nation?

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