Front cover

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Copyright

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Contents

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pp. ix-x

Tables

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p. xi

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Acknowledgments

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p. xiii

First and foremost, I would like to thank Joyce Harrison, editor-in-chief at the University Press of Kentucky, for believing in this project. That always means the world to me, and I am deeply grateful to her. John B. Boles, editor of the Religion in the South series, provided sage advice and encouragement throughout. I owe him much. Nichole Lainhart, editing supervisor at Kentucky...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-10

There are few, if any, subjects that hold more intrinsic interest than the relationship between politics and religion: how religion affects, and is affected by, political thought and behavior. The interplay between the two, both capable of eliciting the most intense of emotions, may be found in virtually all time periods and every imaginable setting. That said, there is perhaps no area of the United States where this intersection is more...

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1. That Which God Hath Put Asunder: White Baptists, Black Aliens, and the Southern Social Order, 1890-1920

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pp. 11-33

Emboldened by a distinctive religious fervor, Southern Baptists leaders called down divine blessings upon racial segregation as the nineteenth century merged with the twentieth.1 “We think it may be safely asserted that God’s hand is in the clear-drawn line between the races,” pontificated a Virginia editor in 1901. “That which God hath put asunder, let not man attempt to join.” Representatives of the South’s largest Christian denomination...

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2. Factionalism and Ethnic Politics in Atlanta: German Jews from the Civil War through the Progressive Era

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pp. 35-56

Most historians of Southern urbanization pay scant attention to ethnic or immigrant group politics.1 It is generally assumed that, lacking the numbers and concentrations associated with Northern cities, such groups failed either to coalesce or to exert much impact. The presence and obvious persecution of African Americans also negated any appeal to ethnic identity by the Southern power structure. According to historian Thomas M. Deaton...

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3. Home and Hearth: Women, the Klan, Conservative Religion, and Traditional Family Values

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pp. 57-99

Much has been written in recent years about race, some on the Klan, and still more on women. But little has been written about women, the Klan, and the intersection of the conservative theology that often served as the underpinning of various manifestations of the KKK.1 This is so largely because the KKK was a white Anglo-Saxon Protestant, male organization. Members had to be men, by the very definition of the organization itself....

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4. Religion, Race, and the Right in the South, 1945-1990

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pp. 101-123

In the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) from the late 1970s to the early 1990s, conservatives in the nation’s largest Protestant denomination staged a complete rout of moderates and assumed control over the convention’s numerous agencies and its $150 million budget. Conservatives had been caucusing and organizing over their grievances since the 1920s, but their anger at denominational leaders who endorsed Brown v. Board of Education...

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5. "City Mothers": Dorothy Tilly, Georgia Methodist Women, and Black Civil Rights

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pp. 125-156

Sometime in the 1950s an editor of a large Southern newspaper advised a group of college students, “If you do not know what social action to take, watch the Methodist women, and where they lead, follow.”1 Similar instructions were issued in 1982 when John Patrick McDowell pointed historians toward Methodist women if they wanted to see evidence of the Social Gospel in the American South.2 Both the editor and the scholar were correct in...

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6. Billy Graham, Civil Rights, and the Changing Postwar South

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pp. 157-186

Billy Graham stands as one of the most recognizable religious figures in the United States and throughout much of the world. The remarkable duration of his tenure as an evangelist—which has lasted just over half a century—no doubt suggests something about both his consistency and flexibility. As Graham biographer William Martin noted, the evangelist has never lacked an understanding of the popular mind. As such, historians and other...

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7. Southern Baptist Clergy, the Christian Right, and Political Activism in the South

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pp. 187-213

Religion has always played a part in Southern politics, although that role has often been obscured. The leaders of institutional religion, the clergy, have often been deeply enmeshed in critical political developments in the region, though often while denying any such involvement. In this chapter, I consider the nature of contemporary political activity among an important Southern religious elite, the clergy of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), the region’s...

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8. The Religious Right and Electoral Politics in the South

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pp. 215-230

Perhaps no other topic surrounding religion and politics has received more attention of late than the role and activities of the Religious Right. In some quarters, it is generally assumed that the Religious Right has the political capital to run roughshod over virtually any opposition, within or without the Republican Party. However, a close examination of issues, constituencies, and electoral results in eleven Southern states between 1994...

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9. Donald Wildmon, the American Family Association, and the Theology of Media Activism

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pp. 231-254

In December 1976, Donald Wildmon had what he describes as a life-changing experience. Frustrated and long enraged by things that offended his sensibilities, the Methodist preacher at a church in northern Mississippi launched a religious campaign, willing to work out a strategy as he went along. He rejected a religion that concentrates on saving souls, instead calling for church members, and especially church leaders, to give up their...

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10. The Christian Right in Virginia Politics

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pp. 255-270

In Virginia, the Christian Right has evolved from a marginal player in the state’s once small Republican Party to a major faction in a party that now has firm control of the state legislature and has largely dominated statewide elections since the 1990s. The movement has developed from a small cadre of uncompromising activists into a strong but deeply divisive faction in the Republican Party, and finally into a skilled and successful partner in the...

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11. The Mercedes and the Pine Tree: Modernism and Traditionalism in Alabama

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pp. 271-286

Over the past several years, literature has emerged to tackle the issue of transformations in the contemporary world. Basic to these transformations is the tension between modernism and traditionalism. Modernism is linked to secularism, rationalism, new technologies, globalism, tolerance, change, and a belief in the future. In contrast, traditionalism is defined by religiosity, faith, hierarchy, particularism, fundamentalism, experience, and...

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12. The Status Quo Society, the Rope of Religion, and the New Racism

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pp. 287-352

The history of the South is, in many respects, the story of an ongoing clash—a centuries-old conflict now, between progress and tradition, change and continuity, reform opposed to reaction. In this way, and in many others, the South serves as a subset—albeit the most intense and concentrated subset—of the greater nation of which it is a part. A variety of our most insightful and revered American and Southern historians, over a long...

Selected Bibliography

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pp. 353-361

Contributors

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pp. 363-364

Index

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pp. 365-386