T David Gordon (PhD, Union Theological Seminary in Virginia) is professor of religion and Greek at Grove City College, where he also teaches courses in the humanities and in media ecology. As a media ecologist, Gordon approaches the subject of this present volume intentionally as a sequel to his similarly titled Why Johnny Can't Preach: The Media Have Shaped the Messengers (P&R, 2009), thus also bearing an indebtedness to Rudolf Flesch. In the earlier work, Gordon argued that the construction, delivery, and reception of sermons had been negatively affected by the "sound-bite" culture of the present day. He takes a similar approach here to the subject of music in worship, positing that not only the form and content but also the pervasiveness of popular music have rendered many worshipers unable to sing or appreciate the Psalms or the "traditional" great hymns sung by previous generations of Christians. He says in the preface, "We are surrounded by nearly ubiquitous pop music—so much so that nothing else really registers in our consciousness as music. If it is not accompanied by a guitar, if it is not accompanied by the predictable melodies and rhythms of pop culture, it just doesn't seem like music" (14). By identifying and responding to this particular problem, Gordon has added a helpful and heretofore largely missing element to the discussion of worship music.
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Issue: "Choosing Grace" Jan./Feb. 2012 Vol. 21 No. 1 Page number(s): 56-58
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