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God's Own PartyThe Making of the Christian Right$
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Daniel Williams

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195340846

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195340846.001.0001

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The Emergence of a Fundamentalist Right

The Emergence of a Fundamentalist Right

(p.33) Two The Emergence of a Fundamentalist Right
God's Own Party

Daniel K. Williams (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

While most evangelicals supported Eisenhower’s centrist conservatism and moderate position on civil rights, self-identified fundamentalists, including Bob Jones, Jr., Billy James Hargis, Carl McIntire, John R. Rice, and Jerry Falwell, supported the more radical positions of the “far right.” Like Billy Graham, they were strongly anticommunist, but unlike Graham, they defended racial segregation and denounced the early civil rights movement. This chapter traces the emergence of a fundamentalist political program that operated alongside the more mainstream evangelical politics of the 1950s. The chapter argues that fundamentalists’ support for racial segregation, a position that was unpopular with many northern evangelicals, prevented them from attaining national political influence during the 1950s. Nevertheless, fundamentalists’ political activities during this decade shaped the political consciousness of many pastors, including Falwell, who would later become Religious Right leaders.

Keywords:   Billy James Hargis, Bob Jones, Carl McIntire, civil rights, Falwell, far right, fundamentalists, John R. Rice, segregation

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