The Evangelical Imagination

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by: Karen Swallow Prior

Christianity Today 2024 Book Award Finalist (Culture and the Arts)

"Provides plenty of fodder for those wishing to explore what evangelicalism is and reimagine what it might become. It's an eye-opener."--
Publishers Weekly

"Akin to enjoying a lively conversation over a cheering yet bracing cup of tea."-- Christianity Today (5-star review)

"A breathtaking reminder of just how powerful the evangelical imagination has been and how much is lost when we forfeit it."--The Gospel Coalition

Contemporary American evangelicalism is suffering from an identity crisis--and a lot of bad press.

In this book, acclaimed author Karen Swallow Prior examines evangelical history, both good and bad. By analyzing the literature, art, and popular culture that has surrounded evangelicalism, she unpacks some of the movement's most deeply held concepts, ideas, values, and practices to consider what is Christian rather than merely cultural. The result is a clearer path forward for evangelicals amid their current identity crisis--and insight for others who want a deeper understanding of what the term "evangelical" means today.

Brought to life with color illustrations, images, and paintings, this book explores ideas including conversion, domesticity, empire, sentimentality, and more. In the end, it goes beyond evangelicalism to show us how we might be influenced by images, stories, and metaphors in ways we cannot always see.