Bratt, James D. Abraham Kuyper: Modern Calvinist, Christian Democrat. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2013.
This is a well-written academic biography of Abraham Kuyper. It does a fine job in setting the context of Kuyper’s life and documenting the intellectual currents which influenced Kuyper. It also is valuable in providing the context for Kuyper’s thought (a particular political situation, for instance). This may affect the evaluation of certain aspects of Kuyper’s thought. Bratt provides a warts and all kind of biography, which is useful when evaluating the thought of an influential figure. The major weakness of this work, to my mind, is Bratt’s own left-of-center viewpoint. There were several occasions in which Bratt declared Kuyper’s thought to be contradictory (and the part deemed the outlier was the conservative part). I often wondered at these points if a right-of-center biographer would have seen Kuyper as contradictory at these points or whether he would have found Kuyper’s thought more cohesive.