Chronicle of Higher Education Article on Serenity Prayer

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Fri May 16 17:17:14 UTC 2014

Fred's article is wonderful. It contains fascinating new results about
the provenance of the Serenity Prayer and insightful commentary about
the ongoing tectonic shifts in research methodologies for historical

The results obtained by searching large scale databases of documents
can upend traditional historical narratives, e.g., the account that
the Serenity Prayer was composed for a 1943 church service.

Congratulations to Fred and The Chronicle Review for publishing this
important article.


On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 5:36 PM, Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Shapiro, Fred" <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU>
> Subject:      Chronicle of Higher Education Article on Serenity Prayer
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Some on this list may remember my publicity in 2008-2009 concerning the que=
> stion of whether Reinhold Niebuhr wrote the "Serenity Prayer."  I have now =
> found new information that seems very strongly to point to Niebuhr as the o=
> riginator.  I wrote an article about the new findings in the Chronicle of H=
> igher Education.  ADS-L's own Stephen Goranson, who was the first to bring =
> forth a very early attribution to Niebuhr, is mentioned.
> The Huffington Post has just picked up the story.  Ben Zimmer has also writ=
> ten about it in Visual Thesaurus.
> Fred
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

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