Kresta in the Afternoon – July 19, 2018 – Hour 1

+  Is America a "City Upon a HIll?" (2 segments)

  • Description: In the Sermon on the Mount, Christ tells us "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden." This phrase has been popular in America since well before its founding - in his 1630 sermon "A Model of Christian Charity" John Winthrop told the colonists that their new community would become a city upon a hill, an ideal that was placed upon the hilly capital of Boston. Since then, other politicians including JFK and Ronald Reagan have used the term as well. Was America ever a city upon a hill? Is it now? We talk with Dr Richard Gamble.
  • Segment Guests:
    • Dr. Richard Gamble
      Richard Gamble holds the Chair in History and Politics at Hillsdale College, where he serves as professor of history. He’s the author of “In Search of the City on a Hill: The Making and Unmaking of an American Myth.”
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    • In Search of the City on a Hill: The Making and Unmaking of an American Myth

      In Search of the City on a Hill challenges the widespread assumption that Americans have always used this potent metaphor to define their national identity. It demonstrates that America's 'redeemer myth' owes more to nineteenth- and twentieth-century reinventions of the Puritans than to the colonists' own conceptions of divine election. It reconstructs the complete story of 'the city on a hill' from its Puritan origins to the present day for the first time. From John Winthrop's 1630 'Model of Christian Charity' and the history books of the nineteenth century to the metaphor's sudden prominence in the 1960s and Reagan's skillful incorporation of it into his rhetoric in the 80s, 'the city on a hill' has had a complex history: this history reveals much about received notions of American exceptionalism, America's identity as a Christian nation, and the impact of America's civil religion. The conclusion considers the current status of 'the city on a hill' and summarizes what this story of national myth eclipsing biblical metaphor teaches us about the evolution of America's identity. (learn more)

+  Update on Nicaragua

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