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In This Country but Not of It: Immigration and Religion Among Colombian Evangelicals in the United States and Spain

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This dissertation examines how the experience of migration and the context of reception influences religious ideas and practices. Using the experience of two branches of a Colombian Evangelical church, one in Miami, Florida and one in Madrid, Spain, I explore the extent to which context of reception and the experiences of migrants shape their narratives, ideas about belonging, and evangelism strategies. Blending neo-institutionalism theory and lived religion, this comparative ethnography highlights how local, national, and transnational factors play a role in the religious practices of people. Throughout the dissertation, I highlight how adaptation is constrained by both internal and external factors that include, but are not limited to what previous literature on religious adaptation would suggest. While much of the literature comparing the role of religion in the lives of immigrants in the US and Europe has focused on examining whether or not religion is beneficial or damaging for migrants’ well being, I shift my focus to religious adaptation, and not on religious compatibility. Ultimately, I explore how blending lived religion and neo-institutionalism can tells not just about immigrant religion, but also about how people and organizations adapt to an increasingly globalized and transnational world

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  • 04/03/2019
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