Jimmy Carter’s unique mix of Sunday School, politics, and historical memory

Jimmy Carter, whose life-long faith and charity work is well-known, has taught Sunday School for most of his life. Perhaps you didn't know it, but you can actually attend his class at Maranatha Baptist Church, though they recommend you get there no later that 5:30 am if you want a good seat! (Back in May, … Continue reading Jimmy Carter’s unique mix of Sunday School, politics, and historical memory

Is NASA applying Manifest Destiny to Outer Space?

Earlier this week NPR's Mary Louise Kelly interviewed NASA administrator (and former Republican Representative from Oklahoma), Jim Bridenstine, on All Things Considered. When asked, "Why do humans have to go to Mars?" Bridenstine remarked that its not just human nature to explore, but "its who we are as a country." That's why "we" ventured to … Continue reading Is NASA applying Manifest Destiny to Outer Space?

We need more “Reconstruction buffs”

Civil War buffs - you know some of them. They've visited the battlefield, can tell you the details of uniforms and weapons technology, and love to debate the merits of wartime generals. They know battlefield geography and the the conditions of ordinary soldiers. But I doubt you know any "Reconstruction buffs." Reconstruction refers to the … Continue reading We need more “Reconstruction buffs”

“Mainline” Mennonites Decide against the Telegram at Kansas City Convention

This title is totally in jest. But evidently there was an effort to clean up some outdated language in denominational documents at "MennoCon 2019," which included mention of the telegram -- something that sparked some humorous social media posts from those at the event. Held in Kansas City, the event was the official convention of the … Continue reading “Mainline” Mennonites Decide against the Telegram at Kansas City Convention

New Research on Transatlantic Evangelicalism in the Age of Billy Graham

Yesterday, the Anxious Bench offered up a fascinating post by Hilde Løvdal Stephens, who teaches English at the University of Southeastern Norway. She is doing some groundbreaking research on transatlantic evangelicalism in the decades after World War II -- the era of Billy Graham crusades and Cold War fears. More specifically, she writes about the … Continue reading New Research on Transatlantic Evangelicalism in the Age of Billy Graham

Christian Faith part of Culture Wars swirling around Women’s Soccer Team

As in other examples where the culture wars have intersected with sports teams and American athletes, Christian faith has become part of the issues. Conservative "worldview" media has focused on former team member, Jaelene Hinkle, who drew criticism for speaking out against LGBTQ interests and back in 2017, withdrew from the national team rather than … Continue reading Christian Faith part of Culture Wars swirling around Women’s Soccer Team

Did Black Soldiers Fight for the Confederacy?

My biennial class on the American civil war is coming up this fall. In addition to the war itself, I am looking forward to covering the historical narratives that continue to capture our imagination as Americans. Of course this will include Lost Cause historiography, which leads to the question above. Historian Kevin M. Levin has … Continue reading Did Black Soldiers Fight for the Confederacy?