America's God From Jonathan Edwards to Abraham Lincoln
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Description: Religious life in early America is often equated with the fire-and-brimstone Puritanism best embodied by the theology of Cotton Mather. Yet, by the nineteenth century, American theology had shifted dramatically away from the severe European traditions directly descended from the Protestant Reformation, of which Puritanism was in the United States the most influential. In its place arose a singularly American set of beliefs. In America's God, Mark Noll has written a biography of this new American ethos. In the 125 years preceding the outbreak of the Civil War, theology played an extraordinarily important role in American public and private life. Its evolution had a profound impact on America's self-definition. The changes taking place in American theology during this period were marked by heightened spiritual inwardness, a new confidence in individual reason, and an attentiveness to the economic and market realities of Western life. Vividly set in the social and political events of the age, America's God is replete with the figures who made up the early American intellectual landscape, from theologians such as Jonathan Edwards, Nathaniel W. Taylor, William Ellery Channing, and Charle Hodge and religious inspired writers such as Harriet Beecher Stowe and Catherine Stowe to dominant political leaders of the day like Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln. The contributions of these thinkers combined with the religious revival of the 1740s, colonial warfare with France, the consuming struggle for independence, and the rise of evangelical Protestantism to form a common intellectual coinage based on a rising republicanism and commonsense principles. As this Christian republicanism affirmed itself, it imbued in dedicated Christians a conviction that the Bible supported their beliefs over those of all others. Tragically, this sense of religious purpose set the stage for the Civil War, as the conviction of Christians both North and South that God was on their side served to deepen a schism that would soon rend the young nation asunder. Mark Noll has given us the definitive history of Christian theology in America from the time of Jonathan Edwards to the presidency of Abraham Lincoln. It is a story of a flexible and creative theological energy that over time forged a guiding national ideology the legacies of which remain with us to this day.
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All the information you need in one place! Each Study Brief is a summary of one specific subject; facts, figures, and explanations to help you learn faster.
List price: $28.95
Copyright year: 2005
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 4/21/2005
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 1.75" tall
Mark A. Noll is McAnaney Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame. He is author or editor of 35 books, including the award-winning America's God: From Jonathan Edwards to Abraham Lincoln.
|List of Tables|
|Introduction: Theology and History|
|Theology in Colonial America|
|The Long Life and Final Collapse of the Puritan Canopy|
|Republicanism and Religion: The American Exception|
|Theistic Common Sense|
|Colonial Theologies in the Era of the Revolution|
|Innovative (but Not "American") Theologies in the Era of the Revolution|
|The Evangelical Surge ...|
|... and Constructing a New Nation|
|Assumptions and Assertions of American Theology|
|The Americanization of Calvinism: Contexts and Questions|
|The Americanization of Calvinism: The Congregational Era, 1793-1827|
|The Americanization of Calvinism: Explosion, 1827-1860|
|The Americanization of Methodism: The Age of Asbury|
|The Americanization of Methodism: After Asbury|
|The "Bible Alone" and a Reformed, Literal Hermeneutic|
|The Bible and Slavery|
|Climax and Exhaustion in the Civil War|
|Conclusion: Contexts and Dogma|
|Historiography of Republicanism and Religion|