A collection of the country's most respected historians, philosophers, and theologians examines the role of religion in the founding of the United States. This collection of never before published essays, originally delivered at the Library of Congress, presents the most original and recent scholarship on a topic that still generates considerable controversy. Anyone interested in colonial history, religion and politics, and the relationship between church and state will benefit by reading this important new book.
'Can an atheist be a good American?' Religion and the New Republic is a quite helpful and scholarly presentation of various ways to answer this important historical question. * Religion & Liberty * An important and well-written collection contributing to a deeper understanding of the place of Christianity in Early American society and politics. -- Garrett Ward Sheldon, The University of Virginia's College at Wise This is a grand collection of essays on church-state relations in the early Republic-a subject which is often oversimplified or even caricatured in today's battles over educational vouchers and public prayers. The contributors, among the finest scholars in the field, fully convey the rich variety of accommodations that existed between religion and the public order in the American formative period. -- Richard Morgan,, Bowdoin College This book sheds new light on the complex religious philosophies of John Adams and Thomas Jefferson and also on the complex mixture of popular religious sentiments in the early years of the American republic. It is well worth careful reading. -- Harold Berman,, Emory University, School of Law This insightful collection canvasses key issues on the massive basis of current scholarship. The contributors are leading authorities in the field of religion during the Founding period. The result is a diverse, wonderfully informed assessment of this tantalizing and vital subject, one warmly recommended alike for the scholar and for the general reader. -- Ellis Sandoz,, Louisiana State University This collection of essays provides a sophisticated, highly contextualized reading of the past that will deepen the contemporary debate over the relationship between church and state. The conclusions are both surprising and provocative. -- Rosemarie Zagarri, George Mason University All essays are well-written and documented. * CHOICE * In its balance, restraint, and respect for a long tradition of reasoned debate, it provides us with a role model we can live by. * Books and Culture * This volume, with its copious endnotes and comprehensive index, is a fine contribution from an historical perspective to the national discussion on the relationships of religion, morality, church, and state. Scholars and other readers interested in these themes will value it. * The Catholic Historical Review * A lively attack on the 'strict-separationist' construction of the Establishment Clause and an attempt to explain why the founders thought that state encouragement of religion supports good government. -- Phillip Munoz * Claremont Review of Books * This collection contributes to the lively-and politicized-conversation about religion's role in the Republic and advocates on all sides of the debate-from accomodationists to separationists-will find much to celebrate and condemn in this provocative book. * Religious Studies Review *