Mission and Menace: Four Centuries of American Religious Zeal

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9780800662837: Mission and Menace: Four Centuries of American Religious Zeal

Observing that Abraham Lincoln once described the United States as an "almost chosen nation," Robert Jewett offers a critical survey of the history of America's self-understanding as a nation enjoying both divine blessing and a God-given vocation as a "city on a hill."

From beginnings at Jamestown, Jewett shows, the American mythology of divine mission has decisively shaped both domestic and foreign policies of the developing nation, and it remains one of the most important forces affecting the United States' role in the world today. Chapters include:

Colonial Beginnings: The City Set Upon a Hill
The Second Great Awakening, Manifest Destiny, Reform and Reaction
From the Civil Rights Movement to the Vietnam War
The Political Distortion of Religion: Triumphant Fundamentalism, Impeachment, and the War against Terrorism and more.

Written in the tradition of Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States, the volume includes black and white illustrations.

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About the Author:

Robert Jewett is Guest Professor of New Testament at the University of Heidelberg and Professor of New Testament Interpretation Emeritus at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. He is the author of numerous books in American religious and cultural history and New Testament studies, including Romans (Hermeneia, 2006, 978-0-8006-6084-0).

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