"The Wreckage and all the Glory": Protestant America and the legacy of the Great War

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Abstract

Approaching the centennial of the Great War, historians are beginning to review its lasting effects on the world. Many will draw attention to innovations in warfare and the appalling cost of the industrialized, mechanized violence. This article argues for the benefit of reconsidering the period's religious perspectives on the conflict, particularly those articulated by America's mainline Protestant leaders. These men's words demonstrate a thoroughgoing faith in the power of war to achieve and to transform a faith that has remained at or near the center of American culture since the guns of August began firing a century ago. Students of religion who pay attention to these wartime voices not only better understand American approaches to war, but also the actors who, for better and worse, shaped the discipline of religious studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-25
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Presbyterian History
Volume92
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Religious studies

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