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Robert Bellah, Sociologist of Religion who Mapped the American Soul, Dies at 86

posted on August 7, 2013

Margalit Fox of The New York Times pens the obituary for sociologist Robert Bellah. Bellah was 86 and died from complications from heart surgery. He is best known for identifying America’s “civil religion,” the link between church and state that is not distinctly one or the other. “Modern America has a soul, not only a body, and Bellah probed that soul more deeply and subtly than anyone in his field or his time,” said Steven M. Tipton, professor in the Candler School of Theology at Emory University.

Read at The New York Times