Jonathan Edwards Center awarded $340,000 NEH Grant

The National Endowment for the Humanities has awarded The Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale a three-year grant from the Endowment’s Scholarly Editions Program, beginning in October 2012.

The total award is $340,000, with significant indirect costs benefiting Yale Divinity School, according to Center Director and Executive Editor Ken Minkema.

EdwardsThe award marks the third grant the Jonathan Edwards Center has received from the NEH since 2006, when the Center was named a "We the People" project.

"With this vital support," said Minkema, "the Edwards Center will continue adding new content to its online archive and implementing new initiatives, such as our online journal and global sermon editing project."

The funds will be used to prepare and upload new electronic texts to the Center’s web site and also help offset costs for staff support and office expenses.

The NEH describes its We the People project as a program  “designed to encourage and enhance the teaching, study, and understanding of American history, culture, and democratic principles.”

Scholarly Editions and Translations grants support the preparation of editions and translations of pre-existing texts and documents of value to the humanities that are currently inaccessible or available in inadequate editions.  Grants typically support editions and translations of significant literary, philosophical, and historical materials.

In the last five competitions the Scholarly Editions and Translations program received an average of 71 applications per year. The program made an average of 26 awards per year, for a funding ratio of 37 percent.

The Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale was established in 2003 in anticipation of the completion of the 26-volume Yale edition of The Works of Jonathan Edwards, which contains sermon transcriptionsWith Yale University Press’s completion of those volumes in 2008, the Center carried the work of the Edwards project forward with creation of a comprehensive, fully searchable, critical, annotated 73-volume digital edition, WJE Online, including some 100,000 pages of transcripted Edwards sermons, notebooks, letters, and treatises by the celebrated 18th Century American theologian and preacher.

In recent years the Center has expanded its global outreach, establishing affiliate centers in Australia, Benelux, Germany, Hungary, Poland, South Africa, and Brazil.

In September 2011 the Center announced the launch of a new, freely accessible online journal, Jonathan Edwards Studies, which is interdisciplinary and professionally refereed and features submissions from graduate students, young scholars, clergy, seminarians and other Edwards enthusiasts.

In July the Center announced another new initiative, the Global Accelerated Sermon Editing Project, inviting scholars, pastors, graduate students and others worldwide to help edit some 750 sermons by Edwards.  The project combines work on transcripts of sermons that are close to 300 years old with some of the latest digital editing technology.

Date Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2012 - 9:18am