Just who are America’s evangelicals? Conventional wisdom says that evangelical Protestantism is a white-bread, white people’s religion. The movement’s leading voices in public affairs discourse—Focus on the Family’s James Dobson, Sojourners’ Jim Wallis, megachurch pastors Bill Hybels and Rick Warren and essayist Lauren Winner—all are quite white. Recent polls by the Pew Forum underscore this general impression. More than eighty percent of those polled who are members of evangelical Protestant denominations or independent churches are Caucasians. [...]Read the rest of The evangelical complexion.
Joel A. Carpenter is a Professor of History and the Director of the Nagel Center for the Study of World Christianity at Calvin College. The author of Revive Us Again: The Reawakening of Modern Fundamentalism, 1930-1946 (Oxford, 1998), he also co-edited The Changing Face of Christianity: Africa, the West and the World (Oxford, 2005).