Faith in Fiction: The Emergence of Religious Literature in America

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Harvard University Press, Jan 1, 1981 - American fiction - 269 pages
2 Reviews

The first full-length study of early religious fiction from the Revolution to the Civil War, this book explores a long forgotten genre of writing. Ranging over the fiction of some 250 American writers, Reynolds provides an overview of the bestsellers of their time and the popular culture of the period. The literary movement he traces began as a cautiously allegorical one, and he finds that it evolved into a fairly realistic genre by the mid-nineteenth century. This shift from the metaphysical to the earthly was abetted by the authors' uses of a variety of appealing modes: the oriental and visionary tale, historical fiction on biblical themes, and the domestic novel.

Reynolds' study addresses several questions: When did religion first appear in American fiction, and why was the novel increasingly chosen as the appropriate literary mode of popular inspiration? How could theology become entertainment? In what sense does the rhetorical strategy of this fiction reflect changing ways of religious discussion? How can the sermons, essays, or memoirs of the early writers help us to understand the themes and techniques of their fiction?

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Review: Faith In Fiction: The Emergence Of Religious Literature In America

User Review  - Rachel Brand - Goodreads

Read the first couple of chapters as preliminary research for my Honours Project before deciding to focus on literature of the 20th century. Interesting, but rather dry and the descriptions of the ... Read full review

Review: Faith In Fiction: The Emergence Of Religious Literature In America

User Review  - Karen Renner - Goodreads

Reynolds will introduce you to religious fiction you've never heard of (but may not have ever missed). However, I really wanted him to define his terms a bit more (like "post-Calvinist," for example ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
1
Doctrinal and Illustrative Fiction
72
Debunkers and Extenders
165
Copyright

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About the author (1981)

David S. Reynolds is Distinguished Professor at the Grad

David S. Reynolds is Distinguished Professor at the Grad

David S. Reynolds is Distinguished Professor at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. His books inuate Center of the City University of New York. His books inuate Center of the City University of New York. His books include "John Brown", "Abolitionist", winner of the Gustavus Mclude "John Brown", "Abolitionist", winner of the Gustavus Mclude "John Brown", "Abolitionist", winner of the Gustavus Myers Outstanding Book Award; "Walt Whitman's America", winneyers Outstanding Book Award; "Walt Whitman's America", winneyers Outstanding Book Award; "Walt Whitman's America", winner of the Bancroft Prize and the Ambassador Book Award and a r of the Bancroft Prize and the Ambassador Book Award and a r of the Bancroft Prize and the Ambassador Book Award and a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; and "Befinalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; and "Befinalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; and "Beneath the American Renaissance", winner of the Christian Gauneath the American Renaissance", winner of the Christian Gauneath the American Renaissance", winner of the Christian Gauss Award from the Phi Beta Kappa Society. He lives in Old Wess Award from the Phi Beta Kappa Society. He lives in Old Wess Award from the Phi Beta Kappa Society. He lives in Old Westbury, New York. stbury, New York. stbury, New York.

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