A Spiritual (But Not Religious) Biography of Charles Lindbergh

Chris introduces his next book project: a spiritual (but not religious) biography of Charles A. Lindbergh. [Read more…]

Are There Good Religious History Books for Children?

The children’s religious book market is booming… so why are there so few good church histories and Christian biographies for those readers? [Read more…]

When Religious Biography Is Not Hagiography: Woodrow Wilson

A new book on Woodrow Wilson illustrates that religious biography need not be hagiography. [Read more…]

The Problems of Writing Biography (Part 3 – Evidence and Imagination)

Why historians and biographers must often tell stories imaginatively, on the basis of relatively little evidence. [Read more…]

Top Five Books on Benjamin Franklin

What are the best books on the ever-fascinating founder Benjamin Franklin? As I have been writing a religious biography of Franklin for Yale University Press, I have been getting to know the vast literature on Franklin. Here are my suggestions for where to start. 1) The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin. A no-brainer, as this eminently readable [Read More…]

The Biographers and Jonathan Edwards

Today’s post is an excerpt from my essay on George Marsden, Jonathan Edwards, and the Art of Religious Biography, from the recently-released book American Evangelicalism: George Marsden and the State of American Religious History (Univ. of Notre Dame Press), which I co-edited with Darren Dochuk and Kurt Peterson. Biographers have put Jonathan Edwards’s thought and life [Read More…]

Two New England Women

Is history an art or a science? History is empirical and creative. We can marvel at both the diligence of archival research (which itself often involves creativity) and at the creativity of a historian who can unlock the past to us in all of its stunning strangeness and similarity. “History … [is] an imaginative creation,” [Read More…]