America's Religious History

America's Religious History

Faith, Politics, and the Shaping of a Nation

Thomas S. Kidd
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Product Details

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  • 9780310128236
  • Digital Enhanced Edition
  • Desktop, iOS, Android
  • November 12, 2019

  • Theology - Church History

About the Authors

Thomas S. Kidd

Thomas S. Kidd

Ph.D., Notre Dame

Thomas S. Kidd is distinguished professor of history at Baylor University. He has written many books, including America’s Colonial History and The Great Awakening, and also writes and appears regularly in mainstream media. A past winner of a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship, he tweets at @ThomasSKidd.


In the post-9/11 world, it is not difficult to see how important religion remains in America and around the globe. An older generation of scholars expected that America and the rest of the Western world was headed inexorably toward secularization and the end of religion. America is undoubtedly secular in many ways, and our constitutional order requires a clear distinction between faith communities and government. Yet from the colonial era to the present, American men and women have been, and have remained, a pervasively religious people.

In America's Religious History, leading historian Thomas S. Kidd traces the theological and ethnic diversity and enduring strength of American religion, with special attention to Christianity and evangelical faith. Interweaving religious history and key events from the larger narrative of American history, the book considers how faith commitments and categories have shaped the nation.

Written with the student in mind, America's Religious History offers an up-to-date, narrative introduction useful for undergraduate and graduate-level courses on American religion. General readers wanting to better understand the religious background of American life and politics will also enjoy its engaging and insightful overview.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction

  • 1. Religion in Early America

  • 2. Reviving American Faith

  • 3. Religion and the American Revolution

  • 4. The Era of the Second Great Awakening

  • 5. Global and Domestic Missions

  • 6. Slave Religion and Manifest Destiny

  • 7. The Slavery Controversy and the Civil War

  • 8. Immigration and Religious Diversity

  • 9. Evolution, Biblical Criticism, and Fundamentalism

  • 10. The Religious Challenges of the World Wars

  • 11. Civil Religion and the Cold War

  • 12. Civil Rights and Church-State Controversy

  • 13. The Christian Right and the Changing Face of American Religion

  • 14. Immigration, Religious Diversity, and the Culture Wars

  • Epilogue: American Religion in the Twenty-First Century

  • Index

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