British Association for American Studies


‘Protestantism and the Superpowers: Mission, Spirituality, and Prayer in the USA and USSR’ (The University of Leicester)

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‘Protestantism and the Superpowers: Mission, Spirituality, and Prayer in the USA and USSR’ (The University of Leicester)

September 27, 2014

The organisers would like to invite all those interested to a one-day workshop on ‘Protestantism and the Superpowers: Mission, Spirituality, and Prayer in the USA and USSR’. The conference will be an opportunity to hear and discuss current research exploring the religious dynamics of the Cold War with perspectives from both sides of the iron curtain. You can find the draft programme below.

Lunch and refreshments will be provided on the day but as places are limited, please let the organisers know if you are planning to attend (by 20 September at the latest) by emailing Zoe Knoxzk15@le.ac.uk.

If you are a post-graduate interested in receiving financial support to help with travel costs, please also email to the same address, with a sentence or two explaining how the workshop is relevant to your research.

The conference is being supported by the University of Leicester, The British Association of Slavonic and East European Studies, and the Institute of North American Studies, King’s College London.

Dr Zoe Knox (University of Leicester)
Dr Uta Balbier (King’s College London)
Dr Miriam Dobson (University of Sheffield)


10.15-10.50                         Coffee and Registration

10.50-11.00                         Welcome

11.00-12.40                         SESSION 1

Christian America and the Cold War
Chair/Discussant: John Coffey (University of Leicester)
·         Axel R. Schäfer (Keele University, UK): ‘Evangelicals and Empire: Conservative Protestants and US Foreign Policy from World War II to the Early Cold War’
·         Uta Balbier (King’s College London, UK): ‘From anti-communism to brotherly love: Billy Graham’s changing attitudes towards the Soviet Union’
·         Emily B. Baran (Middle Tennessee State University, USA): ‘The Basement Crusade: Billy Graham and the Siberian Seven Incident’

12.40-13.40                         Lunch

13.40-15.20                         SESSION 2          
Protestant Thinking and Theology in a Cold War Context
Chair/Discussant TBA
·         Dianne Kirby (University of Ulster, UK): ‘The President, the Patriarch and the Ecumenical Movement: The Cold War Challenge to Christian Unity’
·         Daniel L. Smith-Christopher (Loyola Marymount University, USA), ‘Swords, Plowshares, and Missiles: The Bible in the Cold War’
·         Riho Altnurme (University of Tartu, Estonia): ‘The influence of Cold War on theological reflection in Soviet Estonia’

15.20-15.50                         Coffee

15.50-17.00                         SESSION 3
Imagining a Protestant ‘Other’ in the Cold War
Chair/Discussant TBA
·         Miriam Dobson (University of Sheffield, UK): ‘Between demonisation and human rights: Protestant minorities in the USSR during the Cold War’
·         Zoe Knox (University of Leicester, UK): ‘”Jehovah’s Witnesses, Communists or Christians?”: Witnesses as the Cold War Other in the USA and USSR’

17.00-17.20                         Conclusions/Future Directions


September 27, 2014
Event Category:


University of Leicester
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University of Leicester
University Rd
Leicester, Leicestershire LE1 7RH United Kingdom
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