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The Kingdom of Matthias [Anglais] [Broché]

Paul E. Johnson , Sean Wilentz
5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
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The Kingdom of Matthias: A Story of Sex and Salvation in 19th-Century America The Kingdom of Matthias: A Story of Sex and Salvation in 19th-Century America
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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

an extraordinary cache of information about the period from roughly 1800 to 1850 (Atlantic Monthly)

Présentation de l'éditeur

Johnson and Wilentz bring to life the spiritual and sexual tensions of mid-nineteenth-century America through the sensational and unforgettable story of the cult of Matthias.

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 236 pages
  • Editeur : OUP USA; Édition : New Ed (5 octobre 1995)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0195098358
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195098358
  • Dimensions du produit: 1,2 x 13,8 x 20 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 491.826 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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Dans ce livre (En savoir plus)
Première phrase
ELIJAH PIERSON WAS a supremely unlikely candidate for membership in the cult of Matthias. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait
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Commentaires client les plus utiles
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Bel essai de microhistoire 13 août 2014
Par Arrakis
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
En retraçant la vie du "prophète" Matthias (Robert Matthews), Johnson et Wilentz rendent compte avec minutie et dans un récit très vivant l'atmosphère religieuse des premières décennies du XIXe à New-York. Partant des multiples traces laissées par les adeptes de cet étrange et éphémère royaume, ils donnent un relief saisissant aux inquiétudes et aux quêtes spirituelles qui parcourent la société et débouchèrent sur l'essor des mouvements évangéliques ou des Mormons (avec qui Matthias se sent des affinités comme le montre sa tardive rencontre avec Joseph Smith).
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.3 étoiles sur 5  22 commentaires
27 internautes sur 27 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A Fascinating Microcosm of the Burned-Over District 26 janvier 2002
Par Blah - Publié sur
In this work, Paul Johnson has taken a relatively small and unknown event and used it to illustrate not only an interesting event but also an interesting perspective on the Burned-Over District as a whole. It touches on everything from sexual corruption to radical doctrinal innovations. The Burned-Over district saw the beginning of numerous religious movements such as Mormonism, Adventism, Christian Scientists, numerous smaller religions that did not survive, and even significant political movements such as Antimasonry.
This book is the story of one of those movements. The prologue introduces Matthias as he went to Kirtland to visit with the Mormon Prophet, Joseph Smith. While this event occurred near the end of Matthias’ activity, it is obvious that he stole many of his ideas from Joseph Smith. Matthias initiated the practice of the washing of feet which was common to both the followers of Joseph Smith and Ellen White. He also believed that the truth of the Gospel had fallen from the earth shortly after the time of Christ another Mormon belief. In addition, he had a sword which he claimed was ancient similar to Smith’s sword of Laban, as well as naming the Priesthood after the order of Melchezidek. Likewise, his early mentor Mordecai Noah taught that the Indians were actually a branch of the Israelites which is a central idea found in the Book of Mormon. All of these ideas came out before 1830 when Matthias began his activity.
The most humorous part of this history is the anecdotes that relate to Matthias’ enemies trying to shave off his beard. Johnson has done an excellent job condensing all the most relevant information in this short work. The Kingdom of Matthias is an enjoyable read and a must for anyone interested in this interesting period in American religious history.
9 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Proves once again that past is prologue. 25 avril 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur
"Kingdom of Matthias" serves as proof that religious cults and their leaders are not new to this century. A fascinating account and eerily accurate reflection of what happens when successful, intelligent people look for something more from life in the wrong place. With the sex scandals, questionable financial practices, media attention, and made-to-order eccentric leader, this story is a historical mirror to today's events. Recommended.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A cult of personality 24 mai 2010
Par J. Donovan - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Although I am an academic with expertise in the Second Great Awakening and Early National Period of US history, I had never heard of the Prophet Matthias until a colleague suggested I read this book. "The Kingdom of Matthias" by Paul Johnson and Sean Wilentz is an extraordinary study in what happens when enthusiastic religion and mental illness combine in one individual to tip him and his followers over into the unhealthiness of a personality cult.

The Prophet Matthias stands in a long line of deeply eccentric American religious figures whose stories are compelling and frightening, yet who remain on the fringe of American religious history. He is David Koresh without an explosive encounter with BATF, a cult leader who demanded that his followers submit to him in every segment of their existence, including sexually.

But perhaps the most important and powerful story in this book is the story of his most devoted and loyal follower, who went on to play a significant role in US history in her own right. I decline to reveal her identity in this review because if the reader knows who she was, it will dramatically dilute the book's final paragraph and, ultimately, its full impact. Suffice it to say that you will never look at her the same way again after reading this book.

I'm seriously considering assigning this book to my undergraduate students in "Christianity in America" this fall. It is very readable, very provocative, and will make you think about the issues it raises long after you have finished reading it.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Nova! Nova! Ave fit ex Eva! 1 juin 2009
Par Giordano Bruno - Publié sur
News! News! Ave is born of Eva! Well, fellow post-Judeochristians, the good news is that religious frenzy has come and gone in American history before, and it eventually burns out. The "burnt-over district" of New York State got its nickname from the fury of its religious frenzy in the 1820s-1840s, during what historians have called the Second Great Awakening. With any luck, the lesson learned from that episode can be applied to the current weirdness, when a religious fanatic in Kansas can shoot a doctor to death in the nave of his own church, all in the name of Life. The lesson is: stand fast and don't let the bigots ignore their own sins.

The writers of this amusing little tale of 'sex and salvation' are two of America's finest academic historians. Sean Wilentz is the author of "Chants Democratic" and other books of social history of the early 19th C, as well as of "The Age of Reagan." Paul E. Johnson is also a social historian and the author of "A Shopkeeper's Millennium", concerning the enormous societal changes in America from the era of guilds and local trade to the dawning of modern enterprise. Those two books are classics that I recommend very strongly. "The Kingdom of Matthias" is a bagatelle by comparison; I'm quite sure Wilentz and Johnson had a lot of fun researching and writing it. It reads like a jolly novella.

In the 1830s, Robert Matthews of upstate New York was able to persuade a number of people of his divine inspiration. He was, he announced, the reborn Matthias, the Spirit of Truth, the Prophet of the God of the Jews. One of his devotees was a wealthy merchant Elijah Pierson, for whose murder Matthews would be tried in 1835. The Prophet's co-defendant in that case was a gaunt, tall woman of color named Isabella Baumfree, better known to later generations as Sojourner Truth. Ms. Baumfree had an ambiguous place in the cult of the Kingdom of Matthias, as the servant of the Prophet. Neither defendant was convicted, but the trial put paid to Matthews's recruiting efforts in New York. The authors are less convinced of anyone's innocence. Everything known about Matthews suggests the typical sociopathic profile of a 19th Century Jim Jones. There was, by the way, the usual juicy hanky-panky of free-love and consort-swapping in and around the Kingdom of Matthias. And there were comic opera efforts by the outraged agents of conventional religiosity to shave the Prophet's beard! As a spokesman for the Afghan Taliban declared, when asked why his cohorts all went bearded: "All prophets wear beards!"

Matthews, at one point, traveled west to meet Joseph Smith, the prophet of another, more successful new revelation, also a scion of the "burnt-over district." The report is that the two prophets spoke privately at some length, and then denounced each other as impostors. One has to wonder why Smith's cult thrived so mightily while Matthews's crashed in scandal, when there was nearly nothing to separate them in their initial phases. Are we ready to conclude that Joseph Smith was the real thing?

Among the preachings of Matthias there were some interesting anathemas; judgment would be cast upon:
- all who say that the first day of the week is the Sabbath
- all who preach to women without their husbands
- all who say that sprinkling is baptism
- all who say the immersion with clothes on is baptism
- all who eat passover in a lower room
- all who buy and sell land
- all lawyers
- all who drink wine from bowls
- all men who wear spectacles
- all who say that the Jews crucified Jesus
- all women who do not keep at home

The restoration of absolute patriarchy was a central tenet of the Kingdom of Matthias. There are, of course, skeptical humanists who observe that male fear of women's assertiveness is fundamental to most forms of fundamentalism.

Was Matthews a con man? A deliberate liar and opportunist fraud? Or a madman? Or an emissary of Satan? Don't you feel an urge to read this little book of 170 pages to gather the clues?
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Fascinating 1 janvier 2014
Par C. Medine - Publié sur
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
I bought this to read about Sojourner Truth's role in the Kingdom of Matthias. But it sets out the whole story of that scandal. It reads like a novel!
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