SHIPSHEWANA: An Indiana Amish Community

Dorothy O. Pratt, Author . Indiana $29.95 (209p) ISBN 978-0-253-34518-9

In this careful community study, Pratt (a professor and assistant dean at Notre Dame) analyzes the tension between assimilation and cultural distinctiveness among the northern Indiana Amish in the 19th and 20th centuries. A focal point of Pratt's discussion of Amish boundary-setting is World War I, when being a German-speaking pacifist was not exactly an asset. Pratt shows that even beyond their young men's refusal to fight, all Amish were suspect because they wouldn't buy war bonds or support the Red Cross. She also examines the 1921 state law that required all children to attend school until the age of 16—a law that many Amish strenuously defied. The book contains some digressions, such as a history of the Ku Klux Klan in Indiana and a dry detour into Amish farming techniques, but in general this is a worthy case study of resistance to change. (Dec.)

Reviewed on: 11/15/2004
Release date: 12/01/2004
Genre: Religion
Open Ebook - 224 pages - 978-0-253-02356-8
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