, , , ,

These books are from one of my reading lists…I can’t vouch for every book listed because I have’t read all of them yet (I’ve probably read a third of them).

The list is divided into three sections–books on the oirigins of religious liberty and religious history in America, the state of religious liberty (and its threats) today, and religious literacy in general. There is some overlap in material covered between books because I find comparisons between authors on the same topic to be more useful.  With that being said, most of the historical books are written from a middle ground and balanced perspective, rather than one espousing either the religiousity or secularism of the foudning fathers (both of which, IMO, fail to take into account the historical and philisophical complexities of the day)…but I totally admit to the liberal and secular leaning bias for the books about what is going on today.


(mirrored @ Hail Columbia Virginia’s FB)



Founding Faith by Stephen Waldeman

So Help Me God: The Founding Fathers and the First Great Battle Over Church and State by Forrest Church

American Gospel by Jon Meacham

The Faiths of the Founding Fathers by David L. Holmes

Revolutionary Spirits: The Enlightened Faith of American’s Founding Fathers by Gary Kowalski

Was America Founded as a Christian Nation? A Historical Introduction by John Fea



Thy Kingdom Come: How the Religious Right Distorts Faith and Threatens America (an Evangelical’s Lament) by Randall Balmer

Why the Religious Right Is Wrong: About Separation of Church & State by Rob Boston

Evangelical Does Not Equal Republican or Democrat by Lisa Sharon Harper

Kingdom Coming: The Rise of Christian Nationalism by Michelle Goldberg

God’s Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn’t Get It by Jim Wallis

Roads to Dominion: Right-Wing Movements and Political Power in the United States by Sara Diamond

Restless Souls : The Making of American Spirituality by Leigh Schmidt


Religious Literacy

Religious Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know–and Doesn’t by Stephen Prothero

American Grace: How Religion Divides and Unites Us by Robert D. Putnam

God in America, a 3 part PBS documentary by Frontline & American Experience, avaliable online for free viewing

Religion in America (8th Edition) by John Corrigan and Winthrop S. Hudson (this is a textbook, I recomend a library rather than purchacing it)