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Grant number like: FT-51647-03

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Peter J. Thuesen
Tufts University (Somerville, MA 02144-2401)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

$5,000 (approved)
$5,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2003 – 7/31/2003

Predestination: The Fate of an Idea in American Protestant Culture

Predestination--the idea that before the creation of the world, God foreordained the eternal destinies of all persons--is one of the most fascinating and perennially controversial doctrines of the Christian tradition. Yet no general historical narrative has ever been written of the varied career of predestination as a single idea in American Protestant culture from the Puritans to the present. This study attempts to offer such an account, drawing particularly on works by women who stood outside of the academic establishment, as well as writings by immigrant Lutherans and other non-Calvinists whose long-forgotten debates over predestination belie the common scholarly assumption that the doctrine was a peculiarly Puritan preoccupation.