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6259-Jay Case Publishes "An Unpredictable Gospel..." through Oxford Press

6259-January 20, 2012

Jay CaseJay Case, Ph.D., professor of history at Malone University, has published his most recent work, An Unpredictable Gospel: American Evangelicals and World Christianity 1812-1820 (Oxford University Press, January, 2012).
According to the publisher's website: The astonishing growth of Christianity in the global South over the course of the twentieth century has sparked an equally rapid growth in studies of ''World Christianity,'' which have dismantled the notion that Christianity is a Western religion. What, then, are we to make of the waves of Western missionaries who have, for centuries, been evangelizing in the global South? Were they merely, as many have argued, agents of imperialism out to impose Western values? In An Unpredictable Gospel, Jay Case examines the efforts of American evangelical missionaries in light of this new scholarship. He argues that if they were agents of imperialism, they were poor ones. Western missionaries had a dismal record of converting non-Westerners to Christianity. The ministries that were most successful were those that empowered the local population and adapted to local cultures. In fact, influence often flowed the other way, with missionaries serving as conduits for ideas that shaped American evangelicalism. Case traces these currents and sheds new light on the relationship between Western and non-Western Christianities.

This work challenges the conception of evangelical missionaries as cultural imperialists.

"American missionaries went out to bring religious change to other countries, but in this highly original study, Jay Case shows that new Christian movements emerging in 19th-century Africa and Asia changed Christianity in America. 'World Christianity' is not just a feature of our times; it was already influencing American religion and culture 150 years ago. This book will change the way we think about missions and American history."
--Joel Carpenter, Professor of History and Director of the Nagel Institute, Calvin College

The work is available online and also is sold at the Malone University Bookstore.

Malone University, a Christian university for the arts, sciences, and professions in the liberal arts tradition, affiliated with the Evangelical Friends Church, awards both undergraduate and graduate degrees in more than 100 academic programs. Malone is recognized by the prestigious Templeton Foundation as a leader in character development, named an NAIA Champions of Character Five Star Award winner, and is ranked among the top colleges and universities in the Midwest under the category Regional Universities according to U.S.News & World Report's America's Best Colleges 2012.


Suzanne Thomas, APR
Director of University Relations
Malone University
2600 Cleveland Avenue N.W., Canton, OH, 44709
Phone: 330-471-8239
Cell: 330-324-2424

Categories: academics