posted May 17, 2004

Book Earns Recognition

A book by Dr. James Herrick of the Hope College communication faculty has earned recognition from two organizations that review Christian literature.

Herrick's book "The Making of the New Spirituality: The Eclipse of the Western Religious Tradition" was named a 2004 "Gold Medallion Book Award Finalist" by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association, and was cited as one of "Ten Books Every Preacher Should Read" in "Preaching" magazine's 2004 survey of the year's best books for preachers.

"The Making of the New Spirituality: The Eclipse of the Western Religious Tradition" was published in the spring of 2003 by InterVarsity Press. The book tracks and critiques how a new way of viewing spirituality - with an emphasis on divinity in the self and often in all things - has displaced the Judeo-Christian tradition of Western culture. Herrick's book considers the development of the "New Spirituality" across the past three centuries through popular culture.

The Evangelical Christian Publishers Association is an international, not-for-profit, trade organization comprised of 280 member companies worldwide. The Gold Medallion Book Awards include 20 categories, with five finalists chosen for each by a panel of reviewers on the basis of content, literary quality, design and significance of contribution. Herrick's book was recognized as a finalist in the "Christianity and Society" category in March. The winners from among the finalists will be announced during a banquet on Saturday, June 26.

"Preaching" magazine is a bi-monthly periodical designed to encourage and enhance the ministry of pastors and others called to preach in their work. The survey of the year's top books for preachers appeared in the publication's January/February, 2004, issue. "The Making of the New Spirituality: The Eclipse of the Western Religious Tradition" was third on the top-10 list, which was featured with an article that discussed several books in four categories: "Biblical Studies," "Theology," "Church History," and - including Herrick's book - "Ministry and Culture."

Herrick is the Guy Vander Jagt Professor of Communication at Hope, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1984. He was on sabbatical during the recent spring, 2004, semester, teaching at Lithuania Christian College in Europe.

He specializes in courses in argumentation and rhetoric. His other books include "The Radical Rhetoric of the English Deists: The Discourse of Skepticism, 1680-1750," "The History and Theory of Rhetoric: An Introduction," "Argumentation: Understanding and Shaping Arguments," and "Critical Thinking: The Analysis of Arguments."