An American Conscience

Author: Jeremy L. Sabella
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
ISBN: 9781467447119
Size: 10.39 MB
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Reinhold Niebuhr (1892–1971) was an inner-city pastor, ethics professor, and author of the famous Serenity Prayer. Time magazine's 25th anniversary issue in March 1948 featured Niebuhr on its cover, and Time later eulogized him as "the greatest Protestant theologian in America since Jonathan Edwards." Cited as an influence by public figures ranging from Billy Graham to Barack Obama, Niebuhr was described by historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr. as "the most influential American theologian of the twentieth century." In this companion volume to the forthcoming documentary film by Martin Doblmeier on the life and influence of Reinhold Niebuhr, Jeremy Sabella draws on an unprecedented set of exclusive interviews to explore how Niebuhr continues to compel minds and stir consciences in the twenty-first century. Interviews with leading voices such as Jimmy Carter, David Brooks, Cornel West, and Stanley Hauerwas as well as with people who knew Niebuhr personally, including his daughter Elisabeth, provide a rich trove of original material to help readers understand Niebuhr's enduring impact on American life and thought. CONTRIBUTORS (interviewees) Andrew J. Bacevich David Brooks Lisa Sowle Cahill Jimmy Carter Gary Dorrien Andrew Finstuen K. Healan Gaston Stanley Hauerwas Susannah Heschel William H. Hudnut III Robin W. Lovin Fr. Mark S. Massa, SJ Elisabeth Sifton Ronald H. Stone Cornel West Andrew Young

An American Conscience

Author: Sabella, Jeremy
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
ISBN: 9780802875273
Size: 15.92 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
View: 92

Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971) was an inner-city pastor, ethics professor, and author of the famous Serenity Prayer. Time magazine's 25th anniversary issue in March 1948 featured Niebuhr on its cover, and Time later eulogized him as -the greatest Protestant theologian in America since Jonathan Edwards.- Cited as an influence by public figures ranging from Billy Graham to Barack Obama, Niebuhr was described by historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr. as -the most influential American theologian of the twentieth century.- In this companion volume to the forthcoming documentary film by Martin Doblmeier on the life and influence of Reinhold Niebuhr, Jeremy Sabella draws on an unprecedented set of exclusive interviews to explore how Niebuhr continues to compel minds and stir consciences in the twenty-first century. Interviews with leading voices such as Jimmy Carter, David Brooks, Cornel West, and Stanley Hauerwas as well as with people who knew Niebuhr personally, including his daughter Elisabeth, provide a rich trove of original material to help readers understand Niebuhr's enduring impact on American life and thought. CONTRIBUTORS (interviewees) Andrew J. Bacevich David Brooks Lisa Sowle Cahill Jimmy Carter Gary Dorrien Andrew Finstuen K. Healan Gaston Stanley Hauerwas Susannah Heschel William H. Hudnut III Robin W. Lovin Fr. Mark S. Massa, SJ Elisabeth Sifton Ronald H. Stone Cornel West Andrew Young

The Irony Of American History

Author: Reinhold Niebuhr
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226583990
Size: 13.25 MB
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“[Niebuhr] is one of my favorite philosophers. I take away [from his works] the compelling idea that there’s serious evil in the world, and hardship and pain. And we should be humble and modest in our belief we can eliminate those things. But we shouldn’t use that as an excuse for cynicism and inaction. I take away . . . the sense we have to make these efforts knowing they are hard.”—President Barack Obama Forged during the tumultuous but triumphant postwar years when America came of age as a world power, The Irony of American History is more relevant now than ever before. Cited by politicians as diverse as Hillary Clinton and John McCain, Niebuhr’s masterpiece on the incongruity between personal ideals and political reality is both an indictment of American moral complacency and a warning against the arrogance of virtue. Impassioned, eloquent, and deeply perceptive, Niebuhr’s wisdom will cause readers to rethink their assumptions about right and wrong, war and peace. “The supreme American theologian of the twentieth century.”—Arthur Schlesinger Jr., New York Times “Niebuhr is important for the left today precisely because he warned about America’s tendency—including the left’s tendency—to do bad things in the name of idealism. His thought offers a much better understanding of where the Bush administration went wrong in Iraq.”—Kevin Mattson, The Good Society “Irony provides the master key to understanding the myths and delusions that underpin American statecraft. . . . The most important book ever written on US foreign policy.”—Andrew J. Bacevich, from the Introduction

Reinhold Niebuhr

Author: Richard Crouter
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199779694
Size: 15.58 MB
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A primer on the current "Niebuhr revival" of the political left and right, this book traces the significance of Reinhold Niebuhr's thought for secular as well as deeply Christian minds. Placed in the context of religious and cultural history, Niebuhr's theological views deepen and challenge contemporary expertise on issues of war, peace, economic, and personal security. While rejecting cynical pessimism and naive optimism, Niebuhr's Christian realism reinvigorates age-old teachings of the Bible, St. Paul, Augustine, and Kierkegaard. His thought enriches present-day debates between science and religion and between atheists, agnostics, and believers. To live with Niebuhr's legacy is to combine critical acumen with humble self-awareness. It is to pursue a larger common good - for him, God-given - that is shared among individuals, nations, and the world community.

Moral Man And Immoral Society

Author: Reinhold Niebuhr
Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press
ISBN: 9780664235390
Size: 18.15 MB
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Arguably his most famous book, Moral Man and Immoral Society is Reinhold Niebuhr's important early study (1932) in ethics and politics. Widely read and continually relevant, this book marked Niebuhr's decisive break from progressive religion and politics toward a more deeply tragic view of human nature and history. Forthright and realistic, Moral Man and Immoral Society argues that individual morality is intrinsically incompatible with collective life, thus making social and political conflict inevitable. Niebuhr further discusses our inability to imagine the realities of collective power; the brutal behavior of human collectives of every sort; and, ultimately, how individual morality can mitigate the persistence of social immorality. This new edition includes a foreword by Cornel West that explores the continued interest in Niebuhr's thought and its contemporary relevance.

Original Sin And Everyday Protestants

Author: Andrew S. Finstuen
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 0807898538
Size: 20.92 MB
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In the years following World War II, American Protestantism experienced tremendous growth, but conventional wisdom holds that midcentury Protestants practiced an optimistic, progressive, complacent, and materialist faith. In Original Sin and Everyday Protestants, historian Andrew Finstuen argues against this prevailing view, showing that theological issues in general--and the ancient Christian doctrine of original sin in particular--became newly important to both the culture at large and to a generation of American Protestants during a postwar "age of anxiety" as the Cold War took root. Finstuen focuses on three giants of Protestant thought--Billy Graham, Reinhold Niebuhr, and Paul Tillich--men who were among the era's best known public figures. He argues that each thinker's strong commitment to the doctrine of original sin was a powerful element of the broad public influence that they enjoyed. Drawing on extensive correspondence from everyday Protestants, the book captures the voices of the people in the pews, revealing that the ordinary, rank-and-file Protestants were indeed thinking about Christian doctrine and especially about "good" and "evil" in human nature. Finstuen concludes that the theological concerns of ordinary American Christians were generally more complicated and serious than is commonly assumed, correcting the view that postwar American culture was becoming more and more secular from the late 1940s through the 1950s.

Reinhold Niebuhr Major Works On Religion And Politics

Author: Reinhold Niebuhr
Publisher: Library of America
ISBN: 9781598534054
Size: 19.88 MB
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A definitive collection of the theologian and public intellectual who was the conscience of the American Century. “One of my favorite philosophers,” remarked Barack Obama about the theologian Reinhold Niebuhr (1892–1971) in 2007. President Obama is but one of the many American political leaders—including Jimmy Carter and Martin Luther King Jr.—to be influenced by Niebuhr’s writings. Throughout the Depression, World War II, and the Cold War, Niebuhr was one of the most prominent public voices of his time, probing with singular style the question of how to act morally in a fallen world. This Library of America volume, prepared by Niebuhr’s daughter, Elisabeth Sifton, collects four indispensable books: Leaves from the Notebook of a Tamed Cynic (1929), Moral Man and Immoral Society (1932), The Children of Light and the Children of Darkness (1944), and The Irony of American History (1952), along with a selection of essays, sermons, lectures, prayers, including his world-famous Serenity Prayer, and writings on current events—Prohibition, the Allied bombing of Germany, apartheid in South Africa, the Vietnam War—many of which are collected here for the first time.