HDS 2183

Christianity, Capitalism, and Consumerism in Colonial North America and the United States

Catherine Brekus


This course asks how Christianity has both shaped and reflected economic developments in America from the eighteenth century to the present. Besides examining diverse Christian attitudes toward consumerism and capitalism, we will ask how economic developments have shaped understandings of God and the self. Among other topics, we will explore the rise of the consumer revolution in the eighteenth century, the relationship between capitalism and slavery, Christian responses to industrial capitalism, Christian marketing techniques, and the popularity of the prosperity gospel in modern-day America.

Enrollment Limited: No
Open to BTI Students: Yes
Jointly offered as Religion 1489

Course website


0.50 credits
Spring 2015
Thurs 2pm-4pm
Andover Hall Room 103

Relationship to Program Requirements

Program Requirement Area / Category / Art / Designation
MTS Area(s) of Focus
  • History of Christianity
  • Religions of the Americas
MDiv Distribution Category/ies
  • Christianity
MDiv Art(s) of Ministry None
Language Course Designation(s) None