The Amish are one of America’s most fascinating and colorful religious communities. But how does a traditional group that shuns high school, computers, and the ownership of motor vehicles survive amid a high tech society? This concise and authoritative overview describes both the diversity and common practices of the Amish of North America as well as some of the changes underway in their communities. In a lively text, Donald B. Kraybill, a leading scholar of Amish culture explains many of their puzzling practices and shows how the Amish flourish in the midst of modern society.
Some interesting facts from The Amish: Why They Enchant Us:
- Many elderly Amish live in a Grossdawdy (grandparent) house or apartment adjacent to the homes of one of their adult children.
Children in most Amish communities dress in similar styles to their parents.
Amish churches have been established in some 200 communities in about 25 states as well as in Ontario, Canada.
In some ways, the Amish trouble us, even torment us. We worry that without modern technology, higher education, the latest fashions, and unfettered freedom, they might, in fact, be just as happy, if not happier than the rest of us. And so the Amish enchant and trouble us at the same time. They prod us to reflect on the sources of meaning and purpose, on the roots of human happiness.