"Hill's thoughtful analysis is filled with good sense and advances the scholarly discussion. This brief book also would make a fine supplementary assignment for upper-level courses in American history."
—American Historical Review
"No one in the past two decades has read or thought more about southern religion than Sam Hill; this little book is the clearest statement of what he thinks about it."
"No short review can represent fairly Hill's complex and provocative arguments, nor can it pose significant alternative interpretations. His awesome sweep of interest, his immense learning, his cogency are invigorating, and somewhat intimidating."
"Hill's book merits careful reading by Southern historians. For readers who are prepared to examine it carefully, it will provide fresh insights into Southern religion and provoke new questions which deserve scholarly exploration."
"A stimulating and useful study that unites sectional and religious history."
—Journal of Southern History
Hill's overall purpose is to answer the questions: How did there come to be a South (without which there would not have been a North)? Why is the South the heartland of Evangelical Protestantism and a kind of "Bible belt"? What historical developments dispatched the two regions on distinctive courses, religiously and otherwise? How much interaction has there been between the religious institutions of the two regions? How similar and divergent have the cultural patterns, styles, and values been in "the South" and "the North"?
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