“Out of Obscurity” (Mason & Turner, eds.)

In August, Oxford University Press will release Out of Obscurity: Mormonism Since 1945, edited by Patrick Q. Mason (Claremont University) and John G. Turner (George Mason University). The publisher’s description follows:Out of Obscurity

In the years since 1945, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has grown rapidly in terms of both numbers and public prominence. Mormonism is no longer merely a home-grown American religion, confined to the Intermountain West; instead, it has captured the attention of political pundits, Broadway audiences, and prospective converts around the world. While most scholarship on Mormonism concerns its colorful but now well-known early history, the essays in this collection assess recent developments, such as the LDS Church’s international growth and acculturation; its intersection with conservative politics in recent decades; its stances on same-sex marriage and the role of women; and its ongoing struggle to interpret its own tumultuous history. The scholars draw on a wide variety of Mormon voices as well as those of outsiders, from Latter-day Saints in Hyderabad, India, to “Mormon Mommy blogs,” to evangelical “countercult” ministries.

 

Rah & VanderPol, “Return to Justice”

Return to JusticeThis month, Brazos releases Return to Justice: Six Movements That Reignited Our Contemporary Evangelical Conscience, by Soong-Chan Rah (Duke University) and Gary VanderPol (Boston University). The publisher’s description follows:

In recent years, there has been a renewed interest by evangelicals in the topic of biblical social justice. Younger evangelicals and millennials, in particular, have shown increased concern for social issues. But the move toward evangelical social justice is not a recent development. Following World War II, a new movement of American evangelicals emerged who gradually increased their efforts on behalf of justice.

This work explains the important historical context for evangelical reengagement with social justice issues. It tells the story of how, in just two generations, Bible-believing Christians came to rediscover what has always been true: justice is close to the heart of God. The authors provide an overview of post-World War II evangelical social justice and compassion ministries, introducing key figures and seminal organizations that propelled the rediscovery of biblical justice. The book explores the historical and theological lessons learned from evangelical history and offers a way forward for contemporary Christians.