Derek Webb Beyond Belief

Phillip Luke Sinitiere If folk music historically has been an artform of creative social critique, then analysis of Webb’s musical art and artistic production more generally can serve as a collective lens through which to peer into the complex threads of contemporary religion, culture, and politics in the United States.

Doomsday Politics

Kelly J. Baker In 2008, some conservative evangelicals declared on email, websites and forums that the future president, Barack Obama, was not a Muslim in hiding, but decidedly more dangerous. They compared Obama to the charismatic Anti-Christ of the of the Left Behind series, Nicolae Carpathia.

Hell House

Kelly J. Baker I want to go to a Hell House, the evangelical Christian alternative to the ubiquitous haunted houses that pop up every October. I say this almost every year, but I’ve yet to attend one. I’ve only had near misses. When I was in high school in the 1990s, local churches took their youth groups to a Judgement House, the kissing cousin of the Hell House, in Dothan, Alabama. The ride was about 90 minutes round trip, but Judgement House’s message about dangers of the modern world were apparently worth cramming boisterous teens into buses and church vans.

Jesus Never Tapped Out: A Review of “Fight Church”

Kelly J. Gannon “Can you love your neighbor as yourself, and at the same time, knee him in the face as hard as you can?” So asks Fight Church, a new film by directors Daniel Junge and Bryan Storkel, that looks at a growing trend in evangelizing ministries that brings mixed martial arts (“MMA”) into the church. The film follows the MMA ministries of several men who are both pastors and fighters. Are fighting and Jesus diametrically opposed? Or is MMA a way to bring “tough guys” to Jesus? These are the main questions that drive Junge and Storkel’s project. 

The Christian cross, Texan identity, and “Tex-ianity”

  By Ken Chitwood Crosses come in various shapes, sizes, and colors. They are ubiquitous in homes across the United States and pepper the abodes of people throughout the world. Odds are, you have one hanging in your home whether you are religious or not. The art of the cross is a wide and diverse stream with the cross being transformed and translated throughout the ages to speak in new ways to new people in many contexts. Crosses are both religious and civil symbols, co-opted by various cultures and movements as articles expressing deeper realities and worldviews. In Peru, Jesus is […]

An Interview with Randall Balmer, Part Four: The Legacy of Jimmy Carter

Catch up on part one, part two, and part three of our interview with Professor Balmer. A conversation between Paul Courtright of Emory University and Randall Balmer of Dartmouth College on his new book, Redeemer: The Life of Jimmy Carter. Balmer talks about how Carter’s religious formation in the American evangelical tradition informed his early character and later political ambitions that took him to the White House and a continuing career in public service. Balmer attributes much of Carter’s moral vision, focus on human rights as a political agenda, and commitment to mediating conflict to Carter’s religious self-understanding. Randall Balmer is a major interpreter of the evangelical thread in […]

An Interview with Randall Balmer, Part Three: Professor Balmer’s Book, Redeemer

Catch up on part one and part two of our interview with Professor Balmer. A conversation between Paul Courtright of Emory University and Randall Balmer of Dartmouth College on his new book, Redeemer: The Life of Jimmy Carter. Balmer talks about how Carter’s religious formation in the American evangelical tradition informed his early character and later political ambitions that took him to the White House and a continuing career in public service. Balmer attributes much of Carter’s moral vision, focus on human rights as a political agenda, and commitment to mediating conflict to Carter’s religious self-understanding. Randall Balmer is a major interpreter of the evangelical […]

An Interview with Randall Balmer, Part Two: The Rise of the Religious Right and Jimmy Carter in the 1970s

This is part two of our conversation with Randall Balmer. Watch part one here. A conversation between Paul Courtright of Emory University and Randall Balmer of Dartmouth College on his new book, Redeemer: The Life of Jimmy Carter. Balmer talks about how Carter’s religious formation in the American evangelical tradition informed his early character and later political ambitions that took him to the White House and a continuing career in public service. Balmer attributes much of Carter’s moral vision, focus on human rights as a political agenda, and commitment to mediating conflict to Carter’s religious self-understanding. Randall Balmer is a major interpreter of the evangelical thread […]

An Interview with Randall Balmer, Part One: Evangelicalism and Jimmy Carter

A conversation between Paul Courtright of Emory University and Randall Balmer of Dartmouth College on his new book, Redeemer: The Life of Jimmy Carter. Balmer talks about how Carter’s religious formation in the American evangelical tradition informed his early character and later political ambitions that took him to the White House and a continuing career in public service. Balmer attributes much of Carter’s moral vision, focus on human rights as a political agenda, and commitment to mediating conflict to Carter’s religious self-understanding. Randall Balmer is a major interpreter of the evangelical thread in the tapestry of American religious history and […]

Religion and Rasslin’

  Dan Mathewson brings us a short video documenting the story of George South and his blending of evangelical Chrsitianity and professional wrestling. Read Dan’s recent article about South as well as his earlier piece on religious representations in wrestling.