ABOUT THIS BOOK
Traveling evangelist John Brown believed that conventional colleges had become elitist and morally suspect, so he founded a small utopian college in 1919 to better combine evangelical Christianity and higher education. Historian Rick Ostrander places John Brown University in the long tradition of Christian education, but he also shows that evangelicalism had largely separated from mainstream higher education by the twentieth century. This engaging and objective history explores how John Brown University has adapted to modern American culture while maintaining its evangelical character. Brown set out to educate the poor, rural children of the Ozarks who had no other opportunity for schooling. He wanted to instill in them not only religious zeal but also his conception of what constituted significant work, namely manual labor. His concern with practical work is evident today in programs for broadcasting, engineering, teacher education, and business. His sons made academic excellence an institutional priority and gradually transformed the school into an accredited, respected liberal arts college. Head, Heart, and Hand deftly connects the story of John Brown University to the larger currents of American education and religion.