Elesha J. Coffman
Associate Professor of History
Fall 2021 Office Hours
Tuesdays from 1-3 or by appointment.
American intellectual history, American religion, print culture
- Duke University, PhD, 2008
- Duke University, MA, 2006
- Wheaton College (IL), BA summa cum laude, 1997
Academic Interests/Current Research
My latest book explored the spiritual life of the anthropologist Margaret Mead. I am now working on a survey text, Turning Points in American Church History, under contract with Baker Academic. I also serve as editor of Fides et Historia, the journal of the Conference on Faith and History.
- Margaret Mead: A Twentieth-Century Faith (Oxford University Press, 2021)
- The Christian Century and the Rise of the Protestant Mainline (Oxford University Press, 2013)
Selected Academic Publications
- “‘I Didn’t Say That’: Margaret Mead on Nature, Nurture, and Gender in the Nuclear Age,” Modern Intellectual History 18.1 (March 2021), 202-222.
- “Anthropology Meets the Book of Common Prayer: Margaret Mead’s role in revising the liturgy of baptism,” Fides et Historia, 51.1 (Winter/Spring 2019), 124-134.
- “On Methodological Evangelicalism,” Fides et Historia, 51.1 (Winter/Spring 2019), 72-76.
- with Timothy D. Grundmeier, “Print Media,” in The Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Religion in America, ed. John Corrigan (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018), 113-133.
- “The Bible and the Mainline Denominations,” in The Oxford Handbook of the Bible in America, ed. Paul Gutjahr (New York: Oxford University Press, November 2017), 546-557.
- “‘You Cannot Fool the Electronic Eye’: Billy Graham and Media,” in Billy Graham: American Pilgrim, eds. Andrew Finstuen, Grant Wacker, and Anne Blue Wills (New York: Oxford University Press, 2017), 197-215.
- “Marketing the Mainline: The Christian Century and the Business of Ecumenism,” in Religious Periodicals and Publishing in Transnational Contexts: The Press and the Pulpit, eds. Oliver Scheiding and Anja-Maria Bassimir (Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2017), 107-124.
- “The Measure of a Magazine: Assessing the Influence of The Christian Century,” Religion and American Culture 22.1 (Winter 2012), 53-82.
- “The ‘Religious Issue’ in Presidential Politics,” American Catholic Studies 119.4 (Winter 2008), 1-20.
Selected Reviews and Articles
- “Pandemic lessons from the Greatest Generation,” Waco Tribune-Herald, August 11, 2021
- “The Margaret Mead problem,” Aeon, July 1, 2021
- “Margaret Mead by the Numbers,” OUPblog, April 5, 2021
- with Anja-Maria Bassimir, “White evangelicals once admitted they were wrong about Nixon. Will Trump come next?” Washington Post, August 21, 2019
- “Rachel Held Evans: Gone and Soon Forgotten?” Sightings, May 16, 2019.
- “Can Churches Come in from the Cold War?” (review of Paul Mojzes, ed., North American Churches and the Cold War, Eerdmans, 2018), Comment, Mar. 1, 2019.
- “Beyond Empathy: On Historical Disgust and Lament,” Patheos Anxious Bench, Oct. 16, 2018
- “It’s Not about Paige Patterson, Continued: Sex and Gender Beyond Evangelicalism.” Righting America. June 12, 2018
- “Fundamentalists, Modernists, and the Rest of the Story,” (review of Geoffrey Treloar, The Disruption of Evangelicalism), Christianity Today, May 9, 2017.
- “Margaret Mead: Christian, Pro-life Feminist,” Patheos Anxious Bench, March 1, 2017.
- “Are We Entering the End Times for Mainline Seminaries?” Religion Dispatches, August 30, 2016.
- “Billy Graham Is Probably Not the Author of His Own ‘Final Chapter’” Religion Dispatches, Nov. 2, 2015.
- “How Evangelicalism Built Its Brand Loyalty,” (review of Timothy Gloege, Guaranteed Pure: The Moody Bible Institute, Business, and the Making of Modern Evangelicalism) Christianity Today online, June 4, 2015.
- “All Men Should Be Farmers,” CT Women, September 2014.
Courses Taught at Baylor
- HIS 1300 U.S. in Global Perspective
- HIS 2366 History of the United States since 1877
- HIS 4340 Business in American History
- HIS 4369 Religion in America, 1877-Present
- HIS 5360 American Intellectual History
Dr. Coffman's CV