American Pentecostalism began as a culturally isolated sect intent upon announcing the imminence of the world's end. The sect's early millenarian fervor gradually became muted in favor of flag-waving patriotism. At the end of the twentieth century it has become an affluent, worldwide movement thoroughly entrenched in popular culture. Edith Blumhofer uses the Assemblies of God, the largest classical Pentecostal denomination in the world, as a lens through which to view the changing nature of Anglo Pentecostalism in the United States. She illustrates how the original mission to proclaim the end resulted in the development of Bible schools, the rise of the charismatic movement, and the popularity of such figures as Aimee Semple McPherson, Charles Fox Parham, and David Du Plessis. Blumhofer also examines the sect's use of radio and television and the creation of a parallel Christian culture
Edith L. Blumhofer, an associate professor of history and project director for the Institute for the Study of American Evangelicals at Wheaton College, Illinois, is the author of American Evangelicalism: A Guide to the Sources.