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Strategy not scripture: the dynamics of religion and politics in the George W. Bush campaign of 2000

Parsons, Warren (2010)
M.Phil. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Abstract

Ever since George W. Bush came to power in January 2001 there has been a burgeoning interest in his religiosity and its political implications. This interest joined favourably with an already remarkable amount of attention given towards religion and politics in the United States. But to many, George W. Bush added a new dimension and a fresh anxiety to an area perpetually fraught with concern for the religious-political union. The common inference was that Bush, unlike any other president, with his seemingly overt display religiosity was in complete accord with the agenda of Conservative Christians, most notably the Religious Right. In conjunction with one another it was deemed that American democracy was under threat. From the erosion of social policy to the broader risk of a theocratic takeover it had been argued that George W. Bush was in a sense at its core. In keeping with what had arguably been an unpopular presidency the arguments were consistently pejorative and predominantly concerned in extremes. So pervasive was this approach that it was clear that the field of study required, not an antithesis but, a more balanced perspective. To assist in reclaiming a more objective analysis, examination of the 2000 presidential campaign found that contrary to current argument there were strong indications that what had been mistaken for a theocratic agenda and a religious framework was actually rooted firmly in the secular. Examination of certain events, relationships and circumstances offer a new insight into the relationship. From this it is possible to see that what had occurred was political expediency and not necessarily religious purpose.

Type of Work:M.Phil. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Lucas, W. Scott
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
Department:Department of American and Canadian Studies
Subjects:JK Political institutions (United States)
BL Religion
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:1085
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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