Political scientist co-edits book on Protestantism in nation’s origins

Author: Michael O. Garvey


“Protestantism and the American Founding,” co-edited by Michael P. Zuckert, Nancy R. Dreux Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame, was recently published by Notre Dame Press.p. The book is comprised of essays by several historians, theologians and political philosophers on the relationship between Protestant theology and the political thought which shaped the nations birth and early years. In addition to Zuckert and his co-editor, Loyola University political scientist Thomas S. Engeman, contributors include Isaac Kramnick, R. Laurence Moore, Peter Augustine Lawler, Mark Noll, Wilson Carey McWilliams, Thomas G. West and Seymour M. Lipset. The book also features quotations on the interaction of religion and politics from Alexis de Toquevilles classic, “Democracy in America.”p. Zuckert’s lead essay, derived from his book, “The Natural Rights Republic,” another publication of Notre Dame Press, argues that the thought of the American founding era is an amalgam of Protestantism and the political philosophy of the 17th century Enlightenment philosopher John Locke. Challenges to this thesis follow, some contributors arguing that Locke himself was a Protestant political theologian, and others, that Lockean political philosophy is incompatible with Christian political thought.p. “This collection of essays by some of the most eminent scholars in the field will have a wide-ranging influence on both academic and political debate on the vital interaction of religion and politics in historical and contemporary America,” said Garrett Ward Sheldon, professor of political science at the University of Virginias College at Wise.p. _Contact: Michael Zuckert at 574 631-8050 or Zuckert.1@nd.edu _ p.

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