The author is Adjunct Professor of American Church History at the University of Helsinki, Finland. He is the author of numerous articles on religion and American politics, as well as six scholarly books, most recently The Origins of Christian Anti-Internationalism: Conservative Evangelicals and the League of Nations (Georgetown University Press).
The contemporary Christian Right (and the emerging Christian Left) in no way represent the profound threat to or departure from American traditions that secularist polemics claim. On the contrary, faith-based public activism has been a mainstay throughout U.S. history, an essential part of the continuity of the experiment in democracy that the Founding Fathers fashioned in the late eighteenth century. It is from the dynamic interaction between secular viewpoints and faith-based convictions that the American experience has from its very beginnings gained its uniqueness. It is there in that interaction that religion and democracy have been joined as never before and more fully than anywhere else.
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