The Goodells: Tracing a Missionary Family From New England to the Ottoman Empire, Hawai’i, and Appalachia


Bilkent University

15 February 2021, Monday, 15.00

Over the past decade, the study of missionaries from the United States has grown in leaps and bounds. However, much of this work continues to presume that missionaries were always outsiders to the societies they evangelized. While this may be more or less true of the first generation of missionaries, the children of the missionaries often grew up speaking the local languages without a trace of an accent and seeing the world through local lenses. This process of acculturation signals that the work of conversion was often a two-way street and that the experience of living abroad for several generations profoundly shaped different communities of missionaries. My current research involves the story of a single missionary family across three generations from New England to the Ottoman Empire, Appalachian Mountains, and Hawai’i.