The Columbia Guide to Religion in American History by Paul Harvey

By Paul Harvey

The first advisor to American non secular background from colonial occasions to the current, this anthology gains twenty-two prime students conversing on significant topics and issues within the improvement of the various spiritual traditions of the us. those contain the expansion and unfold of evangelical tradition, the mutual effect of faith and politics, the increase of fundamentalism, the position of gender and pop culture, and the issues and probabilities of pluralism. aimed toward normal readers, scholars, researchers, and students, The Columbia advisor to faith in American History presents concise but vast surveys of particular fields, with an intensive word list and bibliographies directory appropriate books, movies, articles, song, and media assets for navigating diverse streams of spiritual idea and culture.

The assortment opens with a thematic exploration of yankee spiritual background and tradition and follows with twenty topical chapters, every one of which illuminates the dominant questions and contours of inquiry that experience made up our minds scholarship inside of that chapter's selected subject. participants additionally define parts wanting additional, extra refined research and establish serious assets for extra examine. The word list, "American non secular background, A--Z," lists the most important humans, events, teams, ideas, and old occasions, improved through broad statistical data.

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Despite fears of religious anarchy, there would be no turning back from the democratization of proselytization. The eighteenth-century revivals were a transatlantic phenomenon, a fact exemplified in the life of George Whitefield. Born into a devout Anglican family, Whitefield attended Oxford as a servitor, a gopher boy for sons of the gentry. While there, he fell under the sway of John Wesley, who had begun an informal fellowship of pietists later pejoratively dubbed the “Methodists,” referring to their emphasis on cultivating a method for spiritual practice.

These “long-haired men and short-haired women” challenged the most fundamental verities of nineteenth-century American society, most especially including gendered religious conventions. In the twentieth century, even as gender hierarchies in terms of religious leadership remained firmly in place for most religious organizations (save for new and marginalized ones, such as the early Pentecostal churches), women still made up the majority of church members, raised vast sums of money to fund home and foreign missions, served local churches in innumerable ways, and ran extensive national organizations that left a legacy of reform in public policy.

Thus such familiar consumer icons as Kellogg’s Corn Flakes, Oneida flatware and silverware, and Tappan kitchen appliances can be traced back to the attempts of religious visionaries to promote health (as in the case of the corn flakes, considered a digestive cleanser) or to provide an economic means to support a utopian dream. Another example is the famous furniture produced by the Shakers. Putting their “hands to work” and their “hearts Major Themes in American Religious Historyâ•…â•… 23â•…â•… to God,” Shaker craftsmanship today brings raised eyebrows of delight from the all-knowing appraisers on Antiques Road Show.

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