American Reformation: Religious Culture in the Revolutionary Era, 1750-1790


ACLS Fellowship Program




Between the Great Awakening and the Bill of Rights, American religion changed dramatically from a culture of colonial churches derived from Reformation models to a pluralized religious world dominated by new Evangelical sects. Much of this complex process has been obscured, however, by a prevailing scholarly interpretation that values religion only to the extent that it seems to have promoted the Revolution and the emergence of American democracy. This project presents the first comprehensive treatment of the changing religious culture of the Revolutionary Period, incorporating the beliefs, institutions, rituals, moral and spiritual teachings of every significant American religious community, including crucial but long-neglected regional movements.