In his early chapters, the author defines the psychological needs of the second- and third-generation Puritans, arguing that these needs arose from the generational conflict between the founders and their children and from the methods of child rearing and religious education employed in Puritan New England. In the later chapters, he reveals how the ministers responded to the crisis in their society by reshaping theology and constructing in their sermons a religious language that helped to fulfill the most urgent psychological needs of the people.
Originally published in 1975.
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