The First Freedoms : Church and State in America to the Passage of the First Amendment
Is government forbidden to assist all religions equally, as the Supreme Court has held? Or does the First Amendment merely ban exclusive aid to one religion, as critics of the Court assert? After years of debate the controversy still rages on, with both positions now more solidified but neither side victorious. The First Freedoms studies the Church-State context of colonial and revolutionary America to provide a bold new reading of the historical meaning of the religion clauses of the First Amendment. Synthesizing and interpreting a wealth of evidence from the founding of Virginia to the passage of the Bill of Rights, including everything published in America before 1791, Thomas Curry traces America's developing ideas on religious liberty and offers the most extensive investigation ever of the historical origins and background of the First Amendment religion clauses. While recognizing that history cannot resolve all modern Church-State issues, Thomas Curry does show that historians can make some definitive statements about what early Americans understood by establishment and the free exercise of religion. This pathbreaking study has been adopted by the History Book Club.
- Hardback | 288 pages
- 160.02 x 238.76 x 27.94mm | 612.35g
- 06 Feb 1986
- Oxford University Press Inc
- New York, United States