Professor Valeri’s areas of specialization include religion and social thought, especially economics, in America; Reformation theology and the political history of Calvinism; Puritanism; and enlightenment moral philosophy. He is currently working on religious persuasion, evangelicalism, and secularism in the eighteenth century.
His latest book, Heavenly Merchandize: How Religion Shaped Commerce in Puritan America, (Princeton University Press, 2010), received the 2011 Philip Schaff Prize from the American Society of Church History. It was also shortlisted for the 2011 American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence in the Historical Study of Religion and selected as one of Choice magazine’s Outstanding Academic Titles for 2010. The book analyzes social transformations in the American economy from the early 1600s, when Puritans argued that personal profit should be subordinate to the common welfare, to the 1740s, when Christians increasingly celebrated commerce as an unqualified good. Previous publications include Law and Providence in Joseph Bellamy’s New England: The Origins of the New Divinity in Revolutionary America (Oxford University Press, 1994), which won the Mackemie Prize from the Presbyterian Historical Society; The Works of Jonathan Edwards, Vol. 17: Sermons and Discourses, 1730-1733 (Yale University Press, 1999); Practicing Protestants: Histories of Christian Life in America, 1630-1965 (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006), co-edited with Laurie F. Maffly-Kipp and Leigh E. Schmidt; and the co-edited Global Neighbors: Christian Faith and Moral Obligation in Today’s Economy (Eerdmans, 2008). His publication list is extensive and includes many book chapters, journal articles, and essays.
Valeri has received several fellowships, including an Andrew W. Mellon fellowship, a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship, an American Council of Learned Societies grant, and a Lilly Endowment faculty fellowship.