By John Corrigan
The "Businessmen's Revival" was once a spiritual revival that opened up within the wake of the 1857 marketplace crash between white, middle-class Protestants. Delving into the non secular historical past of Boston within the 1850s, John Corrigan offers an resourceful and wide-ranging interpretive learn of the revival's importance. He makes use of it as a focus for addressing a outstanding variety of phenomena in American tradition: the ecclesiastical and enterprise heritage of Boston; gender roles and relatives lifestyles; the background of the theater and public spectacle; schooling; boyculture; and, in particular, rules approximately emotion in the course of this era. This vividly written narrative recovers the emotional stories of people from a big selection of little-used assets together with diaries, correspondence, public files, and different fabrics. From those assets, Corrigan discovers that for those Protestants, the expression of emotion was once an issue of transactions. They observed emotion as a commodity, and conceptualized relatives among humans, and among contributors and God, as transactions of emotion ruled by means of agreement. faith grew to become a enterprise relation with God, with prayer as its felony delicate. coming into this dating, they have been accomplishing the "business of the heart." This cutting edge learn indicates that the revival--with its commodification of emotional experience--became an get together for white Protestants to underscore transformations among themselves and others. The reveal of emotion used to be a first-rate indicator of club within the Protestant majority, up to language, pores and skin colour, or gown sort. As Corrigan unravels the importance of those culturally built criteria for emotional existence, his booklet makes a big contribution to contemporary efforts to discover the hyperlinks among faith and emotion, and is a crucial new bankruptcy within the heritage of faith.
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Additional resources for Business of the Heart: Religion and Emotion in the Nineteenth Century
Newspapers reported aspects of the unity and diarists reiterated them. Everyone who commented on unity stressed like Finney that it included “all classes of people,” and that meant economic class as well as other categories of class. ” The religious press reported that Jews and Roman Catholics and African Americans attended. ” At Old South, a Catholic priest was converted, and an African American man gave his testimony. ” 30 The revival also brought together persons of similar occupations for special prayer meetings.
8 Late in 1858, arguments about where the revival had started broke out among different factions in the Northeast. The booklet God Moves in Mysterious Ways (1858) claimed that it began in Newburyport, Rhode Island in January 1858. Those who located the beginnings in New York appealed to the role of the city as seedbed by virtue of its commercial status, as explained by a writer in the Evangelist: “This great heart of the city now became the fountain of religious life sending out its currents to the extremities.
Bostonians, and revival-watchers around the country, noticed male participation because an unusually large number of men participated. At a time when the ratio of female to male church members in Boston was two to one, the fact of prayer meetings overﬂowing with men lent the revival its distinctive proﬁle. Women attended their own prayer meetings, just as men did, but both sexes attended prayer meetings together, and, in fact, such mixed meetings formed the backbone of the revival, the common ground upon which the revival was built.