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date: 28 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores three ways that “the Bible” and the military interrelate in America. Editions of the Bible targeted for distribution among American military personnel have taken a number of different material forms. Military-edition Bibles are material objects that tell stories in which God, divine revelation, the military, and the nation acquire meanings together. Military Bibles also function as “place-holders” for “religion,” in broader disagreements about the role of religion in American public institutions. Finally, narratives about American distribution of Bibles to nations abroad—with, through, or after US military action—convey views about America’s power and purpose in the world, and what religion has to do with it.

Keywords: American Bible Society, American Tract Society, Biblica, US military, military edition Bibles, Gideons International, Pocket Testament League, Young Men’s Christian Association

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