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Faith and the Presidency From George Washington to George W. Bush 1st Edition

7 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0195300604
ISBN-10: 0195300602
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Editorial Reviews

Review


"Wonderfully informed...one could do far worse than approach his text as an alternative biographical portrait of certain chief executives. But he does such a fantastic job of explicating the Presidents' career trajectories by means of their religious convictions that the book is in fact far more than this."
--Journal of American Studies


"At a time when presses (and readers) groan under the weight of panicky punditry on religion and the presidency, it is a welcome relief to possess Smith's well-researched, balanced and fair-minded study of a perennially interesting topic."
--Christian Century


About the Author


Gary Scott Smith chairs the History Department and coordinates the Humanities Core at Grove City College where he has taught since 1978. He is the author or editor of six books, including God and Politics: Four Views on the Reformation of Civil Government (1989) and The Search for Social Salvation: Social Christianity and America, 1880-1925 (2000).

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 680 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (October 12, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195300602
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195300604
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 2 x 6.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,292,861 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Raymond I. Hylton on February 10, 2007
Format: Hardcover
If you are looking for fresh information about the role of faith and religion in the lives of some of America's greatest presidents then I highly recommend purchasing Faith and the Presidency.

The author, Gary Smith has done his homework. His research is very thorough and his style of writing is clear and free of technical jargon.

I thought the book presented a balanced view of democrat and republican presidents; and the author covers each president's religious affiliation without bias. After reading this book I finally understand why religion is such a hot topic during every presidential election.

Reading about Abraham Lincoln and how his faith helped him address the crises of the civil war is the best I have read to date.

Students, teachers of history, religious leaders and those with a love of presidential history need this book to complete their library. A must read for 2007!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Hoodlum on February 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I very much enjoyed perusing this new volume on faith and the

presidency. I happen to know the most about Lincoln's faith, and I thought the author did a great job with the elusive subject of Lincoln's religious beliefs.

Also, in an era in which many books are overpriced--$150 for a hardcover from some presses--it is good to find a book with so much valuable material offered at such a low price.

This book is thorough, well balanced, and reliable. Many books go into the making of one book, as Samuel Johnson said, and Gary Smith has clearly read virtually everything on these various presidents (regarding faith). I especially liked the chapters on TR, FDR, and Eisenhower.

The author demonstrates good sense throughout. Sound judgment is so

important for a historian. This book is an excellent contribution to the fields of history, religious studies, and government. Highly recommended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Michael Lindsay on February 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Gary Scott Smith's Faith and the Presidency is fascinating to read and weighty in substance. Full of personal details drawn from the lives of various presidents as well as important observations about public policy and religious impulses, Smith hits the sweet spot between bold, exciting claims and strong supporting evidence.

I was particularly persuaded by the book's observation that the foreign policy of presidents more readily reveals their philosophical commitments because the U.S. presidency has greater latitude abroad than at home.

This is a book worth reading from cover to cover. Smith hits a home run with this exceptional book. A tour de force!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Champion of tolerant, inclusive societies on February 11, 2007
Format: Hardcover
A first-rate work in which eleven presidents are analyzed in terms of their religious beliefs and their actions. Solid framework of analysis. The work brims with new details, broad understandings, and sound and judicious conclusions. Impressive, varied bibliography. The copious notes, alone, are worth a close read. Sparkling writing and sound organization make this a page-turner.
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