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The dramatic growth of Christianity around the world is one of the defining marks of the church in the last fifty years.
Though it is often harder to detect in America, the balance of power within the global church has shifted away from traditional strongholds in Europe and the United States. How did this happen, and what are the implications for the American church? In a conversation with historian David R. Swartz (Asbury University), we will unpack this complex story and probe its relevance for Christians today.
In Facing West: American Evangelicals in an Age of World Christianity (Oxford University Press, 2020), David highlights untold stories and surprising connections between Americans and the broader world. These encounters, David contends, have deeply shaped American evangelicalism. From politics to culture to theology, evangelicals in the Global South spoke back to American evangelicals on matters of race, imperialism, theology, sexuality, and social justice. Grappling with these dynamic lines of influence and power are important if we are to appreciate the changing shape of Christianity in the twenty-first century.
David R. Swartz is an associate professor of history at Asbury University, where he teaches American religious history, twentieth-century American culture, global religion, Civil War memory, and issues of war and peace. David also blogs at Patheos. His first book, Moral Minority: The Evangelical Left in an Age of Conservatism (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012), earned positive reviews from the New York Times, Journal of American History, and the Christian Century. His latest book is Facing West: American Evangelicals in an Age of World Christianity (Oxford University Press, 2020).
Daniel G. Hummel is the Program Curator for Academic Communities at Upper House and an honorary research fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the author of Covenant Brothers: Evangelicals, Jews, and U.S.-Israeli Relations (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019) and has written for outlets including the Washington Post and Religion News Service.
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