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This is a vivid portrayal of the man who led the movement toward liberal religion in America. Andrew Delbanco traces the development of Channing’s thinking on the relation of man to God and nature, on the reality of evil, on the autonomy of the individual. He reveals Channing’s hope and doubt concerning America’s contribution to human progress. And he recounts Channing’s emergence as a major voice in the antislavery movement—after a complex hesitation to embrace the cause. This is a study of the religious, literary, and political concerns of a man and his time. It will well serve all students of nineteenth-century American thought.