Item description for God in the White House: A History: How Faith Shaped the Presidency from John F. Kennedy to George W. Bush by Randall Balmer...
Overview Randall Balmer, one of America?s top historians, explores the role of personal piety and public displays of faith in each of the modern presidencies--from J.F.K to George W. Bush--and shows how these change according to the times and what they reveal about the man sitting in the Oval Office.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.98" Width: 6.22" Height: 1.1" Weight: 1 lbs.
Release Date Mar 1, 2008
Publisher Harper Collins Publishers
ISBN 0060734051 ISBN13 9780060734053
Availability 0 units.
More About Randall Balmer
Randall Balmer is Professor of American Religious History at Barnard College, Columbia University, and a visiting professor at Yale University Divinity School. Balmer has published ten books, including Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory: A Journey into the Evangelical Subculture in America, which was made into a three-part documentary for PBS. He lives in Woodbury, Connecticut, with his wife, Catharine Randall, who is also a professor and an author.
Randall Balmer has an academic affiliation as follows - Barnard College Barnard College, Columbia University Barnard College B.
Reviews - What do customers think about God in the White House: A History: How Faith Shaped the Presidency from John F. Kennedy to George W. Bush?
Nine Presidents and How They Used God Nov 27, 2009
Randall Balmer has written a fascinating non-denominational account of the views on religion of our U. S. Presidents from J. F. Kennedy to George W. Bush. He describes the differences in their beliefs in God and how strongly they supported the separation of church and state. These differences shifted with time as the country became more involved in this debate, as the presidents both influenced the electorate with their views and were influenced by the shifting political winds. Richard S. Greeley
A provocative overview of religion and the presidency Nov 24, 2009
Randall Balmer's book is a summary of Presidents from Kennedy to George W. Bush, and how their view of faith and religion was reflected in their speech and thought. Balmer is quick to point out that the mere rhetoric of our President's did not necessarily translatedinto action or public policy. Balmer himself makes clear that Americans should not look for "Cheap Grace", in the form of putting high religious expectations upon the Political Office of the President. In short, Presidents must be leaders first, not ministers. Some parts of Balmer's book read like a general review, but he does integrate a fairly broad range of material into this short summary to illustrate how faith and religion (largely Protestant) has influenced the Presidency. I would recommend this book, with the caveat that one does not have to accept word for word his conclusions, but the spirit in which they are made. If you wish to get a sense of how, in recent years, Presidents may have used or abused the concept of religion in the White House, surely this is a good (and very readable) place to start.
For any library strong in American political history, from the high school level on up Mar 15, 2009
Randall Balmer is a professor of American religious history at Columbia University and here offers a fine survey of the interactions between religious belief and politics in modern times, from Kennedy's promise to keep faith and politics separate to Bush's focus on linking religion with the Presidential office. Faith has changed modern presidencies: this book offers a contemporary history examining the presence, influences and choices of faith in the White House and is a pick not just for American Christians, but for any library strong in American political history, from the high school level on up.
Superior service Jan 2, 2009
This book was purchased as a Christmas gift for a friend who wanted to have it for his collection. My wife and I read the book before giving it over to him. Please read this--it is wonderful.
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Distasteful Jul 8, 2008
The cover of the book presents an interesting subject - how faith shapes politics.
Unfortunately, the pages of the book are littered with Randall Balmer's liberal biases that crescendo into a grande finale attack on George Bush, his policies and faith. The book's subtext becomes politics (Balmer's) shaping a discussion on faith, not vice versa. The book is more "his story" than "A History". Balmer uses a plethora of references from The New York Times and other books, including his own. I got tired of looking to the bottom of the page after every reference! The book lacks depth, covering only certain issues from each administration (e.g. focus on GWB Administration's Iraq War with no mention of Faith-Based & Community Initiatives). The book left a bad taste in my mouth, like eating cereal with spoiled milk!
It's no surprise the author claims drinking beer during the day as one of his favorite activities; not reading the Bible or prayer as you might expect from a minister and teacher of divinity.