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Marsden, George M. (1939-) | Heritage Hall, Hekman Library

Name: Marsden, George M. (1939-)

Historical Note:

George M. Marsden was born on February 25, 1939. He earned his bachelor's degree from Haverford College in 1959. A year later he received his M.A. from Yale University where he studied American and Church history. He furthered his education at Westminster Theological Seminary when he received his B.D. in 1963. He returned to Yale to earn his Ph.D. in American History in 1965.

Once he obtained his Ph.D.  Marsden began his career as a member of Calvin College's faculty teaching history.  From 1965 to 1986 served at Calvin College. During this time, he published a number of books including The Evangelical Mind and the New School Presbyterian Experience, 1970 and The Shaping of Twentieth-Century Evangelicalism, 1981. He also became the editor of The Reformed Journal and a member of the council of the American Society of Church History. In 1981 Marsden participated in the trial of McLean vs Arkansas Board of Education as an "expert witness."

From 1986 to 1992 Marsden taught at Duke University. In 1992 he accepted the position of Francis A. McAnaney Professor of History at The University of Notre Dame. Marsden continued to write throughout his career, including writing his award-winning biography of Jonathan Edwards in 2003 entitled, Jonathan Edwards: A Life. He served the college until 2008 when he reached emeritus status.

On a personal level, Marsden married Lucie Commeret in 1969. Together they have a son, Gregory, and a daughter Brynne. After retirement Marsden and Lucie moved back to Grand Rapids, Michigan. Marsden continues to stay in the world of academia as a scholar in residence at Calvin College.

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