American Covenant

A History of Civil Religion from the Puritans to the Present

Author: Philip Gorski

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 386

The long battle between exclusionary and inclusive versions of the American story Was America founded as a Christian nation or a secular democracy? Neither, argues Philip Gorski in American Covenant. What the founders envisioned was a prophetic republic that would weave together the ethical vision of the Hebrew prophets and the Western political heritage of civic republicanism. In this eye-opening book, Gorski shows why this civil religious tradition is now in peril—and with it the American experiment. American Covenant traces the history of prophetic republicanism from the Puritan era to today, providing insightful portraits of figures ranging from John Winthrop and W.E.B. Du Bois to Jerry Falwell, Ronald Reagan, and Barack Obama. Featuring a new preface by the author, this incisive book demonstrates how half a century of culture war has drowned out the quieter voices of the vital center, and demonstrates that if we are to rebuild that center, we must recover the civil religious tradition on which the republic was founded.

American Holy Days

The Heart and Soul of Our National Holidays

Author: Boardman W. Kathan

Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 214

View: 707

In times of stress and conflict the celebration of patriotic holidays can bring us together. These ten chapters examine the traditional national holidays of the United States of America--plus Flag Day and Constitution Day--by presenting the persons and events they commemorate, which have shaped American history and identity. In addition, Lincoln's birthday--never proclaimed a national holiday--is considered in an appendix. This book restores the original meaning of these celebrations and looks closely at their development in American history, seeking to inspire renewed ways of celebration, commemoration, and observance. It is an aid for recalling our history, reclaiming our values and traditions, and restoring a sense of community. Each chapter looks at the many books and research written about the events commemorated by these holidays, showing their relevance for today, and their spiritual or religious dimensions. Although the United States of America was not founded as a "Christian nation" on biblical principles, people throughout American history have perceived divine guidance--or what George Washington called "Providential interposition." This book is for the general public, members of patriotic organizations and associations, and as a resource book for schools and religious institutions.

As a City on a Hill

The Story of America's Most Famous Lay Sermon

Author: Daniel T. Rodgers

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 367

View: 312

How an obscure Puritan sermon came to be seen as a founding document of American identity and exceptionalism “For we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a hill,” John Winthrop warned his fellow Puritans at New England’s founding in 1630. More than three centuries later, Ronald Reagan remade that passage into a timeless celebration of American promise. How were Winthrop’s long-forgotten words reinvented as a central statement of American identity and exceptionalism? In As a City on a Hill, leading American intellectual historian Daniel Rodgers tells the surprising story of one of the most celebrated documents in the canon of the American idea. In doing so, he brings to life the ideas Winthrop’s text carried in its own time and the sharply different yearnings that have been attributed to it since. As a City on a Hill shows how much more malleable, more saturated with vulnerability, and less distinctly American Winthrop’s “Model of Christian Charity” was than the document that twentieth-century Americans invented. Across almost four centuries, Rodgers traces striking shifts in the meaning of Winthrop’s words—from Winthrop’s own anxious reckoning with the scrutiny of the world, through Abraham Lincoln’s haunting reference to this “almost chosen people,” to the “city on a hill” that African Americans hoped to construct in Liberia, to the era of Donald Trump. As a City on a Hill reveals the circuitous, unexpected ways Winthrop’s words came to lodge in American consciousness. At the same time, the book offers a probing reflection on how nationalism encourages the invention of “timeless” texts to straighten out the crooked realities of the past.

American Exceptionalism and Civil Religion

Reassessing the History of an Idea

Author: John D. Wilsey

Publisher: InterVarsity Press

ISBN:

Category: Religion

Page: 262

View: 723

Ever since John Winthrop told his fellow colonists in 1630 that they were about to establish a City upon a Hill, the idea of having a special place in history has captured the American imagination. Through centuries of crises and opportunities, many have taken up this theme to inspire the nation. But others have criticized the notion because it implies a sense of superiority which can fuel racism, warmongering and even idolatry. In this remarkable book, John Wilsey traces the historical development of exceptionalism, including its theological meaning and implications for civil religion. From seventeenth-century Puritans to twentieth-century industrialists, from politicians to educators, exceptionalism does not appear as a monolithic concept to be either totally rejected or devotedly embraced. While it can lead to abuses, it can also point to constructive civil engagement and human flourishing. This book considers historically and theologically what makes the difference. Neither the term nor the idea of American exceptionalism is going away. John Wilsey's careful history and analysis will therefore prove an important touchstone for discussions of American identity in the decades to come.

Politics Reformed

The Anglo-American Legacy of Covenant Theology

Author: Glenn A. Moots

Publisher: University of Missouri Press

ISBN:

Category: Religion

Page: 240

View: 300

Many studies have considered the Bible’s relationship to politics, but almost all have ignored the heart of its narrative and theology: the covenant. In this book, Glenn Moots explores the political meaning of covenants past and present by focusing on the theory and application of covenantal politics from the sixteenth through the eighteenth centuries. Moots demands that we revisit political theology because it served as the most important school of politics in early modern Europe and America. He describes the strengths of the covenant tradition while also presenting its limitations and dangers. Contemporary political scientists such as Eric Voegelin, Daniel Elazar, and David Novak are called on to provide insight into both the covenant’s history and its relevance today. Moots’s work chronicles and critiques the covenant tradition while warning against both political ideology and religious enthusiasm. It provides an inclusive and objective outline of covenantal politics by considering the variations of Reformed theology and their respective consequences for political practice. This includes a careful account of how covenant theology took root on the European continent in the sixteenth century and then inspired ecclesiastical and civil politics in England, Scotland, and America. Moots goes beyond the usual categories of Calvinism or Puritanism to consider the larger movement of which both were a part. By integrating philosophy, theology, and history, Moots also invites investigation of broader political traditions such as natural law and natural right. Politics Reformed demonstrates how the application of political theology over three centuries has important lessons for our own dilemmas about church and state. It makes a provocative contribution to understanding foundational questions in an era of rising fundamentalism and emboldened secularism, inspiring readers to rethink the importance of religion in political theory and practice, and the role of the covenant tradition in particular.

The Broken Covenant

American Civil Religion in Time of Trial

Author: Robert Neelly Bellah

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN:

Category: Religion

Page: 198

View: 143

This Second Edition represents Bellah's summation of his views on civil religion in America. In his 1967 classic essay "Civil Rights in America," Bellah argued that the religious dimensions of American society—as distinct from its churches—has its own integrity and required "the same care in understanding that any religion." This edition includes his 1978 article "Religion and the Legitimation of the American Republic," and a new Preface.

Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity, and Society

Author: Richard T. Schaefer

Publisher: SAGE

ISBN:

Category: Social Science

Page: 1622

View: 715

This three volume reference set offers a comprehensive look at the roles race and ethnicity play in society and in our daily lives. General readers, students, and scholars alike will appreciate the informative coverage of intergroup relations in the United States and the comparative examination of race and ethnicity worldwide. These volumes offer a foundation to understanding as well as researching racial and ethnic diversity from a multidisciplinary perspective. Over a hundred racial and ethnic groups are described, with additional thematic essays offering insight into broad topics that cut across group boundaries and which impact on society. The encyclopedia has alphabetically arranged author-signed essays with references to guide further reading. Numerous cross-references aid the reader to explore beyond specific entries, reflecting the interdependent nature of race and ethnicity operating in society. The text is supplemented by photographs, tables, figures and custom-designed maps to provide an engaging visual look at race and ethnicity. An easy-to-use statistical appendix offers the latest data with carefully selected historical comparisons to aid study and research in the area

Religious Nationalism: A Reference Handbook

A Reference Handbook

Author: Atalia Omer

Publisher: ABC-CLIO

ISBN:

Category: Religion

Page: 328

View: 178

This book tackles the assumptions behind common understandings of religious nationalism, exploring the complex connections between religion, nationalism, conflict, and conflict transformation. • Speeches of political and religious leaders • Chronologies of conflicts in such places as Israel-Palestine, Sri Lanka, and the former Yugoslavia

Bible Believers

Fundamentalists in the Modern World

Author: Nancy Tatom Ammerman

Publisher: Rutgers University Press

ISBN:

Category: Religion

Page: 247

View: 811

Examines the daily life of the congregation of a Fundamentalist church in a suburb in the Northeast