Book details

Church And State In American History

Key Documents, Decisions, And Commentary From The Past Three Centuries

By John F. Wilson, By Donald Drakeman

About the Book

Is America “one nation under God”? We encounter controversies every day that concern prayer in schools and stadiums, school vouchers, religious symbols in public spaces, and tax support for faith-based social initiatives as well as arguments among advocates of pro-choice and pro-life positions. These and other issues are at the center of an ongoing search for a means to delineate the interactions among religious and political authorities-- initially in the United States but increasingly in the rest of the world as well. This updated volume presents chronologically-organized chapters that include selections from documents like colonial charters, opinions of the Supreme Court and salient legislation, along with contemporary commentary, and incisive interpretations of the issues by modern scholars. Figures as divergent as John Winthrop, John F. Kennedy, and Sandra Day O'Connor speak from these pages as directly as Paul Blanshard, Leon Higginbotham, John Courtney Murray, and Robert Bellah. Church and State in American History addresses the difficult relationships among the political and religious structures of our society and the emergence of an American solution to the church-state problem.

About the Author

John F. Wilson is Collord Professor of Religion at Princeton University and for some years directed the Project on Church and State at Princeton. Donald L. Drakeman is the CEO of an international biotechnology company and a lecturer in the department of politics at Princeton University.