American gospel

God, the founding fathers, and the making of a nation

By Meacham, Jon

Publishers Summary:
Author Meacham tells the human story of how the Founding Fathers viewed faith, and how they ultimately created a nation in which belief in God is a matter of choice. At a time when our country seems divided by extremism, this book draws on the past to offer a new perspective. Meacham re-creates the history of a nation grappling with religion and politics--from John Winthrop's "city on a hill" sermon to Thomas Jefferson's Declaration of Independence; from a proposed nineteenth-century Christian Amendment to the Constitution to Martin Luther King, Jr.'s call for civil rights; from George Washington to Ronald Reagan. At the heart of the American experiment lies what Benjamin Franklin called "public religion," a God who invests all human beings with inalienable rights while protecting private religion from government interference. It is a great American balancing act, and it has served us well--From publisher description.

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ISBN
978-1-40006-555-4
Publisher
New York : Random House, c2006.


REVIEWS

Library Journal

Reviewed on May 1, 2006

Newsweek managing editor Meacham here holds that, despite the strong religious differences of the Founding Fathers, religion became a force for unity, not division; it shaped the Constitution and the nation without strangling it. This is quite an argument to make given the history chronicled. Quakers were at odds with Anglicans, and New Englanders engaged in witch trials while building a "City of ...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

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