0521746051.01.LZZ_Mark Hutchinson and John Wolffe’s A Short History of Global Evangelicalism, Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 2012.
chapter-by-chapter summary  •  brief summary •  ‘Evangelicalism:’ usage and definitions  •  How Western Historians have thought of evangelicalism


To our knowledge, this is the only historical treatment of global evangelicalism’s beginnings to the present.  It summarizes much pre-existing research on evangelicals, the history of which began in earnest in the 1970s.

  • Requires a familiarity with world history and some evangelical history
    This book is not an introductory textbook. Many terms like neo-evangelism, Confessing Church, Dissenters are left undefined, and many people are mentioned without much context.
  • Pentecostal History
    Despite stated apologies for giving a shorter shrift to pentecostal history in anticipation Edith Blumhofer’s companion volume of that subject, this book seems to pay much more attention to the pentecostal movement other evangelical histories.
  • Missing American voices?
    This book highlights American evangelical activities as it relates to the rest of the world.  As expected in a “short history,” plenty of Americans and American activities are mentioned and also left out, including the history of minority Americans, though the Methodist-Baptist origins of African American Christianity are certainly mentioned. Given that perhaps the majority of evangelical histories focus on America, this is very forgivable and even refreshing.  A couple reviewers noted its slight anti-American tendencies.  In general, this American reader did not find this to be the case, though I did notice one reference indicating a slight bias against George W Bush that may startle (or please) some.
  • Weak on non-English speaking Evangelical World
    This book tries hard to show a “global” evangelical history, but it is weak in non-English areas, probably for the usual reasons of language skills, scholarship that still needs to be done.

Comments are closed.