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Dancing on the Devil's Playground

The Amish Negotiate with Modernity

James A. Cates

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An inside look at the unique balance the Amish strike between tradition and the demands of the modern world.

From technology to social forces, the Amish face an evolving modern world. Their facility in determining whether to accept, reject, or bargain with the options that challenge them allows for measured change that sustains their social fabric and beliefs. In Dancing on the Devil's Playground, James A. Cates employs a sociocultural model to analyze this negotiation and its applications in Amish culture.

Cates, a clinical psychologist, draws on his extensive experience working with Amish...

An inside look at the unique balance the Amish strike between tradition and the demands of the modern world.

From technology to social forces, the Amish face an evolving modern world. Their facility in determining whether to accept, reject, or bargain with the options that challenge them allows for measured change that sustains their social fabric and beliefs. In Dancing on the Devil's Playground, James A. Cates employs a sociocultural model to analyze this negotiation and its applications in Amish culture.

Cates, a clinical psychologist, draws on his extensive experience working with Amish families and communities as a mental health professional, as well as the scholarship of Donald B. Kraybill, a leading Amish expert who developed the "negotiation with modernity" model. Cates uses this paradigm to examine the Amish's principles of assessment and evaluation, their cautious tempo in response to change, and their strategies of critical analysis during negotiations. Dancing on the Devil's Playground features seven fascinating case studies of how the Amish interact with legal, health care, and civil authorities and will help readers better understand Amish perspectives on medical, social, and emotional aspects of life. These case studies include, for example, negotiation with the telephone, services for special medical needs, substance abuse, child sexual abuse, and domestic violence.

These essays illustrate the negotiation techniques the Amish use to protect their unique culture while adapting to the needs of the modern world. The Amish adopt, adapt, defer, or decline the changes they face, all while maintaining their traditions and a unique identity that includes an appropriate distance from the rest of the world.

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Reviews

In Dancing on the Devil's Playground, Dr. James Cates reveals how the Amish negotiate with God and technological and social change in modern mainstream society. This is a fascinating analysis of the religious and cultural decision-making that is shaping a diverse Amish world.

Applying Donald B. Kraybill's model of negotiation with modernity, James Cates explores how the Amish successfully balance tradition and change in their interactions with the North American social mainstream. The collective decisions Amish people make related to physical, mental, and spiritual health and well-being underscore the value for everyone in living intentionally.

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Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Preorder
Trim Size
6
x
9
Pages
160
ISBN
9781421449340
Illustration Description
1 b&w illus
Table of Contents

Preface
1. Negotiating with Modernity: Philosophy, Theory, and Interpersonal Style
2. Operator, Information: This Ain't Jesus on the Line
3. The Crystal Ball of DNA: The Clinic for Special Children
4

Preface
1. Negotiating with Modernity: Philosophy, Theory, and Interpersonal Style
2. Operator, Information: This Ain't Jesus on the Line
3. The Crystal Ball of DNA: The Clinic for Special Children
4. Jesus the Counselor: The Amish and Residential Treatment
5. We Admitted We Were Powerless: The Twelve Steps
6. A Sin Like No Other: Sexually Maladaptive Behavior and Cooperative Treatment
7. Dancing on the Devil's Playground: Drugs, Alcohol, and Rumspringa
8. The Sewing Circle: Survivors of Domestic Violence
Conclusion
Acknowledgments
Notes
References
Index

Author Bio
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James A. Cates

James A. Cates is a board-certified clinical psychologist and licensed addiction counselor in northeast Indiana. He is an associate professor at Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne.