Encyclopedia of Religion
and Society

William H. Swatos, Jr. Editor

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(1936-) Professor of Sociology at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Hadden received his B.A. degree in psychology in 1959 and his M.A. in 1960 in sociology from the University of Kansas; he was awarded a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Wisconsin in 1963. The interdisciplinary nature of his interests is reflected in his appointments as Associate Professor of Sociology and Associate Director of the Civil Violence Research Center at Case Western Reserve University, Professor of Sociology and Urban Studies at Tulane University, and Visiting Professor in the Department of Medicine at the Baylor College of Medicine.

Hadden has provided sustained leadership in professional societies. He has been appointed to the editorial boards or as associate editor for a number of journals, including Social Forces, Sociological Inquiry, Sociological Focus , and Second Opinion . On two occasions (1973-1979 and 1992-1995), he served as Book Review Editor for the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion . He was elected to the executive councils of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, Association for the Sociology of Religion, Religious Research Association, Southern Sociological Society, and American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 1979, he gave the H. Paul Douglass Lecture to the Religious Research Association. He served as President of Association for the Sociology of Religion (1979), both Vice-President (1981-1982) and President (1983-1984) of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, and Vice-President (1982) and President (1986) of the Southern Sociological Society. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Throughout Hadden's career, he has pursued a diverse program of research. His work in the area of sociology of the family has focused on the relationship between social status and interpersonal patterns of address. In the area of urban sociology, Hadden has written on issues ranging from typologies of urban communities, the process of suburbanization, civil violence in urban areas, the demography of nuclear war, and urban social problems. The most important thrust of his work in urban sociology was the development of a classificatory system identifying a common set of variables that could be used at a variety of levels of ecological analysis. The book that best exemplifies this line of work is American Cities: Their Social Characteristics (with Edgar Borgatta, Rand McNally 1965). Another major focus of his work in this area has been the process of suburbanization, which he explored in a series of books such as Suburbia in Transition (coedited with L. H. Masotti, New Viewpoints 1974) and The Urbanization of the Suburbs (coedited with L. Masotti, Sage 1973). Finally, Hadden has analyzed the roots of urban racial violence during the 1960s, most notably in A Time to Burn? (with Masotti and others, Rand McNally 1969).

During the last two decades, Hadden's primary corpus of work has been in the sociology of religion. The general theme unifying the dozen books and 70 journal articles and book chapters he has published in this area is the relationship between religion and politics. His early work focused on more institutionalized forms of religion. Most notable is his book The Gathering Storm in the Churches (Doubleday 1969). As with the early work of Glock and Stark, this interdenominational study of Protestant clergy revealed wide diversity of theological, social, and political beliefs both within and between denominations. It also analyzed tension between clergy and laity over the appropriate posture of churches toward social and political issues.

When Hadden moved to the University of Virginia in 1972, he became aware of an important parachurch phenomenon in America, religious broadcasting. He has written several books in this area, most notably Televangelism, Power and Politics (with Anson Shupe, Holt 1988) and Prime Time Preachers (with Charles Swann, Addison-Wesley 1981). These books are analyses of the political movement that gave rise to religious broadcasting, the nature and size of the audience, the broadcasters and the nature of their messages, and the link between their theologies and political programs. He has also written extensively on religious fundamentalism and pentecostalism, which he argues are the most successful sectarian religious movements of the twentieth century. This theme along with his conceptualization of fundamentalism as a global phenomenon are explored in three books coedited with Anson Shupe: Prophetic Religions and Politics (Paragon House 1986), The Politics of Religion and Social Change (Paragon House 1988), and Secularization and Fundamentalism Reconsidered (Paragon House 1989).

Most recently, Hadden has worked in the area of new religious movements. His two-volume work Handbook on Cults and Sects in America (coedited with David Bromley, JAI 1993), cosponsored by the Association for the Sociology of Religion and the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, compiles more than two decades of research by leading scholars in this area.

Hadden's Southern Sociological Society Presidential Address (Social Forces , Vol. 65, 1987) raised significant questions about the tenability of the secularization thesis and remains a crucial contribution to that debate.

David G. Bromley

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