632 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 27 halftones, 6 maps, 1 chart, 9 tables, notes, index
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-4696-2826-4
Published: March 2017
eBook ISBN: 978-1-4696-2827-1
Published: February 2017
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Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia
The 1740s and 1750s were the dark night of the New England soul, as men and women groped toward a restructured religious order. Conflict transformed inclusive parishes into exclusive networks of combative spiritual seekers. Then as now, evangelicalism emboldened ordinary people to question traditional authorities. Their challenge shattered whole communities.
About the Author
Douglas L. Winiarski is associate professor of religious studies at the University of Richmond.
For more information about Douglas L. Winiarski, visit the Author Page.
“This finely researched project is a gold mine for students of New England church history. . . . One of the best compendia of New England social history to appear in many years. . . . Students of the region will be building on its findings for decades to come.”--Douglas Sweeney, Jonathan Edwards Center at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
“Essential reading for students of early American ‘evangelicalism.’”--John Turner, Patheos
“Drawing on letters, diaries, and testimonies, Winiarski recovers the pervasive and vigorous lay piety of the early 18th century.”--Cushwa Center
"Filled with fresh discoveries and attuned to the experiences of a fascinating cast of characters, Darkness Falls on the Land of Light offers a compelling narrative of religious revival and social discord in early New England. Beautifully written, cogently argued, and astonishingly researched, this is the most riveting book on America’s eighteenth-century revivals to appear in decades."--Mark Valeri, Washington University in St. Louis
"For those who thought that little more could be done with colonial New England religious life, here comes Doug Winiarski to prove them, oh, so wrong. With a nose for manuscripts like no other, he has scoured the repositories, churches, and historical societies of the region for sources that delight and amaze, offering us new voices, the voices of the awakened. The results of his searches, presented with sensitivity and expert analysis, give us a truly innovative and fresh view of the transition, not so much from puritan to Yankee, but from puritanism to evangelicalism."--Kenneth P. Minkema, Jonathan Edwards Center, Yale University
"A richly textured account of the daily rhythms of religious life in colonial New England over a century of awakening and tumult. Winiarski's account of Congregational hegemony and collapse in the fabled New England town is a masterful synthesis by a scholar especially attentive to the cadences of pietistic language and ritual."--Susan Juster, University of Michigan