Jacqueline E. Whitt
Bringing God to Men
American Military Chaplains and the Vietnam War
University of North Carolina Press 2014
New Books in American StudiesNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Military HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in ReligionNew Books in Religion & FaithNew Books Network July 5, 2014 Bob Wintermute
In this original and innovative study of the American military chaplaincy, Jacqueline E. Whitt examines the institution’s challenges and struggles in the post-World War II era, with the Vietnam War acting as the fulcrum for existential change in its identity and mission. By all accounts a largely ecumenical based ministry before Vietnam, according the Whitt the chaplaincy underwent a bell-wether change, becoming more conservative and evangelical in composition and outlook after 1975. The greater context of the book, however, focuses on the experiences of the chaplains, individually and collectively, in the face of tremendous challenges to the institution, the soldiers and civilians they served, and their own concepts of morality and obligation to authority. Bringing God to Men: American Military Chaplains and the Vietnam War (University of North Carolina Press, 2014) is an important study of a very overlooked and often taken for granted branch of the military, and should be of special interest to students and scholars of the intersections of civilian society and military institutions, in time of peace and war.