Honors in English
Date of Award
Thesis Professor Department
Literature and Language
Joshua Reid, Judith Slagle
As a cultural staple, the Christian faith has been a defining characteristic of the United States for generations. Religion has moved from the spiritual and become integral to many parts of this society’s social gatherings, artistic outlets, and even businesses. Often rooting itself in conservative values and interpretations of The Bible, Evangelicalism’s beliefs regarding damnation and hell contradicts its sola scriptura theological view. Yet, with The Bible’s near silence on hellish matters when looked at as a whole, the human need to have these gaps filled allowed for literary portrayals of hell and explanations of damnation to become part of this subsect of Christianity. Lining sermons with bits and pieces of Faustus’s lost soul, a new tradition was born. Filling churches with paintings of unique layers of hell from Dante’s Inferno, this tradition took on new life. This thesis analyzes how Evangelicalism has bypassed The Bible in favor of Doctor Faustusand Inferno as well as how Christianity in the United States influences literature and biblical interpretations.
East Tennessee State University
Honors Thesis - Open Access
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.
Phalen, Kylee, "Fire and Brimstone: Analyzing Evangelicalism's Burning of the Bible in Favor of Literature" (2021). Undergraduate Honors Theses. Paper 647. https://dc.etsu.edu/honors/647
Copyright by the authors.