Gods of the Mississippi

Gods of the Mississippi

Gods of the Mississippi

Gods of the Mississippi

Synopsis

From the colonial period to the present, the Mississippi River has impacted religious communities from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico. Exploring the religious landscape along the 2,530 miles of the largest river system in North America, the essays in Gods of the Mississippi make a compelling case for American religion in motion--not just from east to west, but also from north to south. With discussion of topics such as the religions of the Black Atlantic, religion and empire, antebellum religious movements, the Mormons at Nauvoo, black religion in the delta, Catholicism in the Deep South, and Johnny Cash and religion, this volume contributes to a richer understanding of this diverse, dynamic, and fluid religious world.

Excerpt

This engaging collection of essays assembled by Michael Pasquier explores and exploits the manifold diverse ways that the Mississippi River and the Mississippi River valley have impacted historical, religious, geographical, social, and cultural realities in mid-America and continue to do so today. After working through these essays, one will never again be inclined to limit the Mississippi to any one single category of experience. These essays collectively challenge the standard simple definitions of “the Mississippi.”

Pasquier has brought together a selection of historians whose expertise ranges widely across the subfields of American history. Most also possess focused research interests on specific religious traditions, geographical regions, and/or cultural patterns with some link to the Mississippi or to the regions surrounding the river. These scholars bring their expertise to bear upon those waters and the religious contexts of this great river as well as upon the diverse ways the river has impacted our understanding of American history, especially the portions of the national narrative dealing with the religious experiences of Americans. The nature and character of those relationships form the substantive center of this collection.

The authors of the essays in this volume, for example, challenge a number of the older ways of organizing American religious history, a narrative that rather standardly moves on an east/west axis. The river’s path, however, flows from north to south and features religious stories located in the Midwest, a neglected area in the nation’s history, including its religious history. In these essays we encounter the religious traditions held by African slaves in the Mississippi River valley in the antebellum period, the religious changes introduced into the worlds of the Choctaw and Chickasaw Native American tribes when Christian missionaries entered the river valley, as well as the tensions and conflicts that surrounded the members of new religious movements who settled in the valley, including the Mormons at Nauvoo, Illinois. In the . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.