“An End to Unjust Inequality in the World”

The Radical Tradition of Progressive Evangelicalism

in Church History and Religious Culture
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Since the emergence of the Religious Right in the late 1970s, American evangelicalism has commonly been associated with conservative politics. An examination of nineteenth-century evangelicalism, however, suggests a different affinity. Antebellum evangelicals marched in the vanguard of social change with an agenda that almost invariably advocated for those on the margins of society, including women and African Americans. Evangelicals were involved in peace crusades and the temperance movement, a response to social ills associated with rampant alcohol consumption in the early republic. They advocated equal rights for women, including voting rights. Evangelicals in the North crusaded against slavery. Although Horace Mann, a Unitarian from Massachusetts, is the person most often associated with the rise of common schools, Protestants of a more evangelical stripe were early advocates of public education, including leaders in Ohio, Michigan, and Kentucky. Some evangelicals, including Charles Grandison Finney, even excoriated capitalism as inconsistent with Christian principles.

“An End to Unjust Inequality in the World”

The Radical Tradition of Progressive Evangelicalism

in Church History and Religious Culture

References

3

PilcherLife and Labors pp. 115–116.

4

S.H. Waldo‘The Evidence of the World’s Ultimate Reform,’ Oberlin Quarterly Review4 (July 1849): 288.

22

James H. Fairchild‘Woman’s Rights and Duties,’ Oberlin Quarterly Review4 (July 1849): 236–237 346. The pagination in this fascicle appears to be haphazard.

23

C.C. Foote‘Woman’s Rights and Duties,’ Oberlin Quarterly Review4 (October 1849): 383 406–407 396.

29

L.F. Parker‘Josiah Bushnell Grinnell,’ Annals of Iowa3rd Ser. 2 (January 1896): 249–259; Grinnell Men and Events of Forty Years: 87 88 115.

30

On nativism see GrinnellMen and Events of Forty Years pp. 105–106; on women’s rights see ibid. p. 116.

39

Merle E. Curti‘Non-Resistance in New England,’ New England Quarterly2 (January 1929): 36.

40

Curti‘Non-Resistance in New England’ pp. 35 45 47.

42

Thomas C. Upham‘Essay on a Congress of Nations,’ in Prize Essays on a Congress of Nations for the Adjustment of International Disputes and for the Promotion of Universal Peace without Resort to Arms (Boston 1840) pp. 356 387 373.

43

Upham‘Essay on a Congress of Nations’ pp. 373–374.

45

Wm. B. Brown‘Religious Organizations and Slavery,’ Oberlin Quarterly Review4 (October 1849): 415.

48

Thomas C. Upham‘Essay on a Congress of Nations,’ in Prize Essays on a Congress of Nations for the Adjustment of International Disputes and for the Promotion of Universal Peace without Resort to Arms (Boston 1840) pp. 383–384.

54

Quoted in Thomas and DobsonBlinded by Might p. 214.

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