May 20, 2020

Evangelicalism can look a lot different across the Canadian border. Read more

May 19, 2020

Chris offers a free commencement address to the Class of 2020. Read more

May 18, 2020

In late seventeenth-century Boston a strange story was popular. As David D. Hall recounts it from the telling of Harvard president Urian Oakes: “A child that was born at Norich last Bartholomew-Day…being in the nurses arms last Easterday…being about 30 weeks old spake these words (This is an hard world): the nurse when she had recovered herselfe a little from her trembling, & amazement at the Extrardinariness of the thing said Why deare Child! Thou hast not known it: the… Read more

May 15, 2020

On Monday, I described Paul Matzko’s important new book, The Radio Right: How a Band of Broadcasters Took on the Federal Government and Built the Modern Conservative Movement. Paul described how far Right broadcasters like Billy James Hargis and Carl McIntire gained a mass following for their message, alarming both the Kennedy White House and the liberal mainline churches. In this guest post, Paul describes how the NCC responded to this alarming threat. When the National Council of Churches Went… Read more

May 14, 2020

How should we talk about white evangelicals during the coronavirus pandemic? On the one hand, there’s been no shortage of critical editorials highlighting the relatively small number of evangelical churches that have refused to comply with public health recommendations and government orders to cancel in-person services. Katherine Stewart’s March 27 op-ed in the New York Times is a case in point. Originally published under the provocative title “The Road to Coronavirus Hell Was Paved by Evangelicals: Trump’s response to the… Read more

May 13, 2020

As our series of non-religious turning points in religious history continues into the 20th century, Melissa, Kristin, David, and Chris look at an invention, a piece of legislation, and two related wars. Read more

May 12, 2020

Time will tell if COVID-19 produces lasting changes in Christianity and other faiths, but religious history is full of non-religious turning points. Today we look at three from before 1900, including a previous pandemic. Read more

May 11, 2020

An important new book explores the intersection between politics, religion, and media in modern US history. It’s going to have a major impact. Paul Matzko is a former doctoral student of mine at Penn State. His book, from Oxford University Press, is titled The Radio Right: How a Band of Broadcasters Took on the Federal Government and Built the Modern Conservative Movement. He began researching the world of conservative and far Right religious broadcasters between the 1940s and 1960s, radio… Read more

May 8, 2020

How do we remember World War II, on this 75th anniversary of V-E Day? If previous anniversaries are any guide, Chris expects that we’ll make meaning of the past in light of present circumstances — and likely continue our overuse of war as a metaphor. Read more

May 8, 2020

Here is a book that I look forward to reading but have not yet cracked open. Journalist Jack Jenkins (no relation!) has a new book out called American Prophets: The Religious Roots Of Progressive Politics And The Ongoing Fight For The Soul Of The Country (Harper One, 2020). And no, I am not just writing this on the tribal basis of “We Jenkinses must stick together.” Rather, he raises a critical point about the intersection of religion and politics throughout… Read more

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