Shepherds of the Empire: Germany's Conservative Protestant Leadership, 1888-1919 (Fortress, 2014). It's received strong endorsements from the likes of David Bebbington, Gary Dorrien, and Mark Noll. When not counseling Lord Vader on his serious anger issues, Correll's pastor-theologians were busy interrogating, erecting, and erasing boundaries between "believing" (conservative) and "critical" (liberal) church leaders, between the church and the imperial German state, between theological conservativism and political radicalism, and between seminarians and clergy. His book is a wonderful addition to religion and politics studies that place theological controversy and reform at the center of nation-state building. It would also make for excellent comparisons and contrasts with George Marsden's Fundamentalism and American Culture. Correll offers some interesting reflections on American and German Christianity in his following guest post.
I am a product of the fundamentalist/modernist controversy. The churches I have attended, my undergraduate university, and my current employer all bear the imprint of this century-old conflict. In many cases the wound is still fresh and the conflict is still fought. I recall a poignant moment as a graduate student when I introduced my interest in modern German theology to a trained historian visiting our church. He told me that he was not much familiar with the theology of my dissertation, but he knew that Albrecht Ritschl’s theology arrived straight out of hell. While I am confident that I would have never drawn such distinct lines, the origin of my project was immersed in this thinking. At the beginning of my graduate studies, I told my advisor confidently that I was seeking to show that