"An exhaustive history brimming with lively characters."
--Amy Sullivan, Time
"Detailed and closely argued.... Dochuk...well understands the pivotal role religion plays in shaping America's cultural self-image, and...breaks with a long tradition of historical writing that has monolithically depicted evangelical believers as backward-looking prophets of cultural reaction."
--Chris Lehmann, The Nation
"[Dochuk] skillfully traces a continuous narrative stretching from the Dust Bowl to Ronald Reagan, and demonstrates with prodigious research how this narrative fits into a much broader canvas of...political change. A superbly researched study of grassroots mobilization.... An important book."
--Mark A. Noll, The New Republic
"Very impressive.... From Bible Belt to Sunbelt
is the product of prodigious research."
--Randall Balmer, Christian Century
"Dochuk excels in his profiles of early 'plain-folk' settlers and their world, and the tangled personal, institutional, and doctrinal motives of the ministry that served them.... [A] fascinating portrait of the early Christian Right."
--Ed Kilgore, Washington Monthly
“The nation is today color-coded into red and blue. In this tour de force of research, narrative, and analysis, a brilliant young historian chronicles how Southern California served as the matrix for this enduring bifurcation. Beneath the sunshine and the palm trees, uprooted evangelicals experienced a Great Awakening that transformed American politics in our era.” (Kevin Starr, University of Southern California
“Darren Dochuk's fortunate readers are in for some surprises as well as for enlightenment. The story of the Dust Bowl and the migration to southern California during the Great Depression, usually told through the left-wing tale of Tom Joad, turns out to be prologue to the rise of a vital segment of the modern Christian Right. From Bible Belt to Sunbelt is an essential contribution to our growing understanding of the origins and development of contemporary American conservatism.” (Sean Wilentz, author of The Rise of American Democracy
“With narrative authority and sparkling insight, Darren Dochuk explains how and why Southern California became the crucible of the Christian Right. Anyone who wants to understand the history of modern American conservatism should read this book.” (Michael Kazin, author of A Godly Hero: The Life of William Jennings Bryan
“Darren Dochuk has painted a vista from which unfolds the creation of Reagan’s nation, as the California dreams of Southern evangelicals become the American dreams of Sunbelt conservatives. Through the guiding telescope of Dochuk’s prose, we meet a fascinating cast of characters destined to be staples in future tellings of this important story. This much anticipated book is well worth the wait.” (Steven P. Miller, author of Billy Graham and the Rise of the Republican South
About the Author
is Associate Professor in the Humanities at the John C. Danforth Center on Religion & Politics at Washington University in St. Louis. His writing has appeared in the Washington Post
, Huffington Post
, and other venues.