Kingdom Coming: The Rise of Christian Nationalism

Kingdom Coming: The Rise of Christian Nationalism

by Michelle Goldberg
     
 

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"A potent wakeup call to pluralists in the coming showdown with Christian nationalists."—Publishers Weekly, starred review  See more details below

Overview

"A potent wakeup call to pluralists in the coming showdown with Christian nationalists."—Publishers Weekly, starred review

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In an impressive piece of lucid journalism, Salon.com reporter Goldberg dives into the religious right and sorts out the history and networks of what to most liberals is an inscrutable parallel universe. She deconstructs "dominion theology," the prevalent evangelical assertion that Christians have a "responsibility to take over every aspect of society." Goldberg makes no attempt to hide her own partisanship, calling herself a "secular Jew and ardent urbanite" who wrote the book because she "was terrified by America's increasing hostility to... cosmopolitan values." This carefully researched and riveting treatise will hardly allay its audience's fears, however; secular liberals and mainstream believers alike will find Goldberg's descriptions of today's culture wars deeply disturbing. She traces the deep financial and ideological ties between fundamentalist Christians and the Republican Party, and discloses the dangers she believes are inherent to the Bush administration's faith-based social services initiative. Other chapters follow inflammatory political tactics on wedge issues like gay rights, evolution and sex education. Significantly, her conclusions do not come off as hysterical or shrill. Even while pointing to stark parallels between fascism and the language of the religious right, Goldberg's vision of America's future is measured and realistic. Her book is a potent wakeup call to pluralists in the coming showdown with Christian nationalists. (May 15) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Salon.com editor Goldberg examines the growing belief among some Chirstians that they have a right to take over governing in Christ's name. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
American democracy and the Enlightenment itself are menaced by would-be theocrats and their Republican operatives, contends Salon.com reporter Goldberg. The author brands conservative Christian influence in public life as proto-fascist and a Western version of Islamism. In her view, the subversives are everywhere, passing anti-gay-marriage initiatives and lobbying for anti-abortion judges; more subversives are on the way, because homeschooling is simply an incubator for revolution. The menace is "Christian nationalism," a movement whose tenets Goldberg seeks to relate to the Reconstructionist theology of the late R.J. Rushdoony. He was a genuine theocrat, a postmillennialist who held that Christ would return after believers had thoroughly Christianized the world. In contrast, premillennial American evangelicals hold that Christ will return to a collapsing world, which implies that political reform by believers would ultimately be futile. One of the great stories in the history of the past generation has been the search of newly vibrant American evangelicalism for a political theory. The author infers that Reconstructionism is the new master philosophy, in part because conventional politicians and religious leaders sometimes appear at the same public events as Reconstructionists; she makes no mention of the systematic efforts by some evangelicals to engage Catholic social theory. Goldberg does provide some good reporting, however. She shows that the fiscal controls on the Bush Administration's faith-based initiatives are loose. During her investigation of abstinence-only sex education, she allows its proponents to make a case she finds unpersuasive but plausible. Nonetheless, the authordeclares that now is the time to fight the Christian nationalists, not to placate them. She ends by exhorting her readers to retake the country from the grassroots up. If you think that Christianity is the new Communism, then this is the book for you.
Anna Godbersen - Esquire
“An important work of investigative journalism.”
David Fear - Time Out
“Regardless of where you fall on the moderate-to-progressive political scale, this well-written chronicle of civil liberties under siege by holy rollers will undoubtedly scare the bejesus out of you.”
Tony Normal - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“Goldberg's book will be recognized as the definitive guide to how a relatively tiny group of intellectuals, politicians, and conservatives religionists positioned themselves to take over America. This stuff is no joke.”

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393060942
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
06/19/2006
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author

Michelle Goldberg is a contributing editor at Religion Dispatches and a senior correspondent for American Prospect. Her work has appeared in Rolling Stone, the New York Observer, the Guardian [London], Newsday, and elsewhere. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

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