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The Furnace of Affliction
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The Furnace of Affliction: Prisons and Religion in Antebellum America

Jennifer Graber

Abstract

Focusing on the intersection of Christianity and politics in the American penitentiary system, this book explores evangelical Protestants' efforts to make religion central to emerging practices and philosophies of prison discipline from the 1790s through the 1850s. Initially, state and prison officials welcomed Protestant reformers' and ministers' recommendations, particularly their ideas about inmate suffering and redemption. Over time, however, officials proved less receptive to the reformers' activities, and inmates also opposed them. Ensuing debates between reformers, officials, and inmate ... More

Keywords: Christianity, American penitentiary system, evangelical Protestants, religion, prison discipline, prison officials, Protestant reformers, redemption, inmate conversion, American morals

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2011 Print ISBN-13: 9780807834572
Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014 DOI:10.5149/9780807877838_graber

Authors

Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jennifer Graber, author