Selected Spiritual Writings of Anne Dutton: Eighteenth-Century, British-Baptist,
Woman Theologian by Anne Dutton, compiled and edited by
Joann Ford Watson (Mercer) Women theologians in the eighteenth century were a
rarity. Were there no other reason, this alone would make the literary legacy of
the Baptist Anne (Williams) Dutton (1692—1765) significant.
In 1731, Anne and her minister husband, Benjamin Dutton,
settled in Great Gransden, Huntingdonshire. After Benjamin's death, Anne became
known on both sides of the
Among her many correspondents were Howel Harris, Selina Hastings, William Seward, Phillip Doddridge, John Wesley, and George Whitefield. Harris believed God had entrusted her "with a Talent of writing for Him." Whitefield, who helped promote and publish Anne's writings, commented upon meeting her that "her conversation is as weighty as her letters?'
She wrestled with the question of whether it was "biblical" for a woman to be a writer of theological matters. But in a tract entitled "A Letter to such of the Servants of Christ, who may have any scruple about the Lawfulness of Printing any thing written by a Woman" (1743), she stated that she wrote not for herself but "only the glory of God and the good of souls."
writings impacted evangelical revival in
Getting Right With God: Southern Baptists and Desegregation, 1945-1995 by Mark Newman (Religion and American Culture: The University of Alambama Press) challenges the idea that Southern Baptists were monolithic in their racial views and demonstrates that several factions existed within the SBC during the Civil Rights movement. Although the study is clearly based on his dissertation, its scope is far-reaching enough to engage a wider audience. Focusing on the eleven states of the old Confederacy, Getting Right with God examines the evolution of Southern Baptists' attitudes toward African Americans during a tumultuous period of change in the United States. Mark Newman offers an in-depth analysis of Baptist institutions from the Southern Baptist Convention and state conventions to colleges and churches, but he also probes beyond these by examining the response of pastors and lay people to changing race relations.
The SBC long held that legal segregation was in line with biblical teachings, but after the Supreme Court's 1954 Brown vs. Board of Education decision in favor of desegregating public institutions, some Southern Baptists found an inconsistency in their basic beliefs. Newman identifies three major blocs of Baptist opinion about race relations: a hardline segregationist minority that believed God had ordained slavery in the Bible; a more moderate majority that accepted the prevailing social order of racial segregation; and a progressive group of lay people, pastors, and denominational leaders who criticized and ultimately rejected discrimination as contrary to biblical teachings.According to Newman, the efforts of the progressives to appeal to Baptists' primary commitments and the demise of de jure segregation caused many moderate and then hard-line segregationists to gradually relinquish their views, leading to the 1995 apology by the Southern Baptist Convention for its complicity in slavery and racism. Comparing Southern Baptists to other major white denominations, Newman concludes that lay Baptists differed little from other white southerners in their response to segregation.
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