In Trump, White Evangelical Christians, and American Politics, political scientists Anand Edward Sokhey and Paul A. Djupe bring together a wide range of scholars and writers to examine the relationship between former President Donald Trump and white American evangelical Christians. They argue that, while this relationship—which saw evangelicals supporting a famously unfaithful, materialistic, and irreligious candidate despite self-defining in opposition to these characteristics—prompted many to wonder if Trump himself transformed American evangelical religion in politics, this alliance reflected both change and the outcome of dynamics that were in place or building for decades.
Contributors contextualize the Trump presidency within the story of religious demographic change, the growth of politicized religion, nationalistic religious expression, and the ways religion and politics in the United States are enmeshed in the politics of race. These investigations find that the idea of religious “transformation” is not accurate. Instead, the years 2015 to 2022 saw mainly minor changes to the ways religion appeared in public life—but these changes ultimately complemented and advanced an existing white evangelical strategy to increase political and social power as they became a demographic minority in the United States. Taken together, this collection reveals new insights for readers seeking to understand the religious dimensions of Trump’s rise, the reasons evangelicals become political activists, and the multifaceted alliances between secular politicians and conservative religious subcultures.
Contributors: Abraham Barranca, Ruth Braunstein, Ryan P. Burge, David E. Campbell, Jeremiah J. Castle, Paul A. Djupe, John C. Green, Sarah Heise, Geoffrey C. Layman, Andrew R. Lewis, Gerardo Martí, Eric L. McDaniel, Napp Nazworth, Shayla F. Olson, Enrique Quezada-Llanes, Kaylynn Sims, Anand Edward Sokhey, Hilde Løvdal Stephens, Kyla K. Stepp, Allan Tellis.
Anand Edward Sokhey is Professor of Political Science and a faculty fellow at the Institute for Behavioral Science at the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Paul A. Djupe is Professor of Political Science and director of the Data for Political Research program at Denison University.
"Anand Edward Sokhey and Paul A. Djupe have done a masterful job creating this outstanding volume. Spanning polarization, the inescapable politics of race, and religious nationalism, the volume brings together insights from leading scholars across disciplines. Readers will gain a clear understanding of the factors that led evangelicals to support Trump and a sense of what one might expect from evangelical politics in the years ahead."—Laura R. Olson, Clemson University