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Neoliberalism For God's Sake: Sectarian Justifications For Secular Policy Transformation In The United States

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Chapter Summary

This chapter addresses the sectarian ideational supports for neoliberalism in the United States during the past 30 years. It considers the ways in which various radical right Christian philosophical movements support neoliberalism in an ideational way. The chapter then speculates on the actualized influence that these movements have on welfare policy. It first focuses on three sectarian discourses within the evangelical fold-Dominionism, Christian libertarianism and Prosperity Theology. Second, it would be difficult to argue that neoliberalism-in the abstract or in specific forms like tax policy-has been the central plank within the Religious Right, or that there have been no countervailing voices. Third and related, a number of scholars have attempted to dismiss, refute, or challenge the neoliberal bent of the Religious Right by highlighting more progressive theologies or examples that counter the individualist bent of modern Evangelicalism.

Keywords: Christian libertarianism; dominionism; neoliberalism; prosperity theology; sectarian justifications; secular policy; United States



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