Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Matthew A. SuttonNew Investigator Research Excellence Award
Assistant Professor of History
Matthew Sutton’s area of scholarly expertise is in American religious history. His book, “Aimee Semple McPherson and the Resurrection of Christian America,” published by Harvard University Press in 2007, provides a rich account of the rise of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel. His work has been well received by both academic and popular audiences with laudatory remarks such as, “Beautifully paced and superbly researched, the book weaves McPherson’s inherently fascinating and ultimately tragic career into larger stories about California, Pentecostalism, and emerging popular culture,” as stated by Jon Butler, Howard R. Lamar Professor of American History at Yale University. His book has also received positive reviews in a wide range of publications, including the Vancouver Sun, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Atlantic, The New York Review of Books, the Wall Street Journal and the Detroit Free Press. This book has already won one major prize, the Thomas J. Wilson Prize for the best first book published by Harvard University Press in 2007. Sutton has extended his scholarship and is now working on a second book, tentatively titled “American Evangelicals and the Politics of Apocalypse,” to be published in 2010. This book is concerned with the transformation of evangelical thought in the 20th century. These accomplishments recognize Sutton as one of the important religious historians working today.