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George Whitefield: Evangelist for God and Empire
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George Whitefield: Evangelist for God and Empire

by

Eerdmans 2018

Runs on Windows, Mac and mobile.

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Gathering Interest

Overview

George Whitefield (1714–1770) is remembered as a spirited revivalist, a catalyst for the Great Awakening, and a founder of the evangelical movement in America. But Whitefield was also a citizen of the British Empire who used his political savvy and theological creativity to champion the cause of imperial expansion. In this religious biography of “the Grand Itinerant,” Peter Choi recounts a fascinating human story and, in the process, reexamines the Great Awakening and its relationship to a fast-growing British Empire.

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Key Features

  • Presents a broad picture of one of American's greatest preachers
  • Introduces readers, not only to the evangelist, but also the entrepreneur, and British citizen
  • Examines Whitefield's complex relationship with slavery and war

Contents

  • Part 1: Encounters
    • A British Explorer
    • A British Emissary
    • An American Icon
  • Part 2: Entanglements
    • Whitefield and Slavery
    • Whitefield and War
    • Whitefield and His colleges

Praise for the Print Edition

Peter Choi shows us a George Whitefield we never knew, not just the fiery revival preacher but the pragmatic entrepreneur, a canny citizen of the British Empire. The result is a skillful and complex moral portrait of Whitefield—and a telling parable of American evangelicalism in the making.

—Margaret Bendroth, Congregational Library & Archives, Boston

Rather than emphasizing, as most studies do, George Whitefield’s role in the dramatic events of New England’s ‘Great Awakening,’ Peter Choi concentrates on Whitefield’s own focus—his orphanage in Georgia. Pushing past the turmoil of the early 1740s, Choi studies the neglected second half of the Grand Itinerant’s public career, after the revival fires had cooled. This provocative book’s Whitefield is not merely a celebrity evangelist; he is an imperial strategist, a tactical theologian, and an empire builder who becomes an eager slaveholder and wartime propagandist. He embodies the central dynamics of the British Atlantic world in the eighteenth century.

—Christopher Grasso, College of William and Mary

Product Details

About Peter Y. Choi

Peter Y. Choi is Director of Academic Programs at Newbigin House of Studies and a pastor at City Church in San Francisco. Specializing in eighteenth-century American history, he has taught history of Christianity courses at Calvin Theological Seminary and the University of Notre Dame.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition