Christian Science in the Age of Mary Baker Eddy
Knee, Stuart E. Christian Science in the Age of Mary Baker Eddy. Edited by Jon L. Kakelyn. Contributions in American History 154. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1994.
Knee’s graduate work on the topic of Christian Science in American culture arose from his fascination with alternative faiths and his realization that the subject was underwritten, especially by non-Christian Science scholars. From a historical and social perspective, Knee concludes that Christian Science never intended to be a radical movement revivifying Protestantism, but was a “highly personal, extremely intense vision of one individual” (x). Mary Baker Eddy’s best contribution to social reform, he claims, was her message that it requires ‘right states of mind’—a message the medical profession and mainstream Protestantism would soon heed. Knee presents one of the most accurate and scholarly explanations then available on the relationship between Christian Science, Eddy’s former mentor, Phineas P. Quimby, and other American metaphysical religions. Another valuable contribution is Knee’s assessment of the reactions of other faith communities toward Christian Science, especially Jews, Roman Catholics, Anglicans, Protestants, and Swedenborgians. His recognition of the severe muckraking during Eddy’s mature years explains many of the lingering attitudes about Christian Science. Knee’s detached scholarly view of Christian Science contextualized in American history generates both severe critiques and sincere respect. “Christian Science was born,” he writes, “out of a materialist age … conceived eighteen centuries before by apocalyptic Jews, Essenes, Nazarenes and new Christians” (16).
ISBN-13 (Softcover): 9780313283604
See also annotations:
Annotations related by category:
- Availability: Library or Purchase
- Controversy: McClure’s Magazine (Milmine, Cather)
- Official Christian Science Publication: No
- People: Eddy, Mary Baker
- People: Quimby, Phineas
- Publication Date: 1981-2000
- Resource Types: Book
- Subjects: Christian Science History after 1910
- Subjects: Religion
- Subjects: Social and Cultural Studies