In 1966 Sam Hill published his classic assessment of the white Southern church which, on the whole, failed to speak redemptively in the midst of the civil rights movement. By its focus on personal religious experience and its failure to speak and act prophetically, the white churches did not address a word of reconciliation in a world of racial conflict. Thirly years later Hill has focused on purity of belief as the central theme of Southern religion. In asserting a doctrinal orthodoxy and denouncing specific ethical practices (abortion and gay rights, for example), Southern churches have turned inward in an effort to cleanse and purify themselves. We are in the debt both of the University of Alabama Press for reissuing the books and of Sam Hill for his new introductory essay.