Famine Sufferers Full Page Jul 1897

The Historical Roots of Humanitarian Photography: a 19th-Century Evangelical Newspaper’s Enduring Influence on the Global Aid Industry

On September 2, 2015, the body of 3-year-old Alan Kurdi washed up ashore near the Turkish resort of Bodrum. Within several days, a photograph of the lifeless toddler lying facedown on the beach made front-page headlines around the globe, sparking a wave of concern to address humanitarian crisis in Syria. In this post for HistPhil, I trace the power of such images to the 19th-century evangelical newspaper, the Christian Herald.

Men waiting in the Bread Line at the Bowery Mission, New York

“God is Not Affected by the Depression”: Pentecostal Missions during the 1930s

Published in Church History: Studies in Christianity and Culture. This article asks how the Great Depression of the 1930s shaped pentecostal efforts to proclaim the “full Gospel” in “foreign lands,” showing how some missionaries argued that alleviating poverty, suffering and even some forms of systemic oppression was an integral part of their “spirit-filled” witness.

A St. Louis Post-Dispatch illustration shows people "under the power" on the platform of Maria's tent in a St. Louis meeting during the summer of 1890

A Sane Gospel: Radical Evangelicals, Psychology, and Pentecostal Revivals in the early 20th Century

Published in Religion and American Culture: A Journal of Interpretation 21:2. By examining how evangelicals employed psychological concepts to make sense of ecstatic religious experiences, this article expands our understanding of the interplay among scientific discourse, the varieties of evangelical spirituality, and the emergence of pentecostalism in the early twentieth century.