Anne Potter Wilson Distinguished Professor of American Religious History
Professor of History in the College of Arts and Science
On leave Fall 2021
James Hudnut-Beumler is the Anne Potter Wilson Distinguished Professor of American Religious History at Vanderbilt University. He served as Dean of the Divinity School from 2000 until 2013. Prior to coming to Vanderbilt in 2000, he was dean of the faculty at Columbia Theological Seminary, a program associate for Lilly Endowment, and director of the undergraduate program in Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. Dr. Hudnut-Beumler is the author of Looking for God in the Suburbs: The Religion of the American Dream and Its Critics, 1945-1965 (Rutgers, 1994) and Generous Saints: Congregations Rethinking Money and Ethics (Alban, 1999), and is co-author of The History of the Riverside Church in the City of New York (NYU, 2005). He is also the author of an economic history of American Protestantism from 1750 to the present, entitled, In Pursuit of the Almighty’s Dollar: A History of Money and American Protestantism (University of North Carolina, 2007) and Strangers and Friends at the Welcome Table: Contemporary Christianities in the American South (University of North Carolina, 2018) and co-editor of The Future of Mainline Protestantism (Columbia, 2018) Professor Hudnut-Beumler and his wife, Heidi, are both Presbyterian ministers and make their home in Nashville.
Hudnut-Beumler’s current academic interests include the historiography of religion in the American South, the 19th and 20th century American religious history, the use of non-textual evidence in studying religion, and religion and philanthropy.
Hudnut-Beumler is a member of the American Academy of Religion, the American Society of Church History, and the Organization of American Historians.