Christian nationalism in the new (new) world
This thesis studies the development of a political ideology beholden to an extreme form of Christianity. The work has been prompted by an increased expression of American exceptionalism and Christian nationalism in contemporary politics. In short, the objective of this thesis is to gain more insight into why there are so many Americans who adhere to this ideology today and how this affects the political culture of the twenty- first century, specifically its effects on public education. The thesis is broken up into two parts. Sections 1 and 2 of Part 1 detail what exactly Christian nationalism stands for in American society and how the ideology transformed between the 1690s and the present day. Section 3 and 4 of Part 1 illustrates why exactly this ideology is so persuasive to many Americans, briefly discussing the attraction to the ideology in contemporary American society. Section 5 concludes Part 1 by making connections between the ideology of Christian nationalism and extreme conspiratorial styles of politics. Sections 1 and 2 of Part 2 examine how the ideology became a useful tool in a powerful political movement and touches upon the early iterations of the Christian nationalist movement. Sections 3 and 4 of Part 2 delve into the unique financial backing of the movement in contemporary society as well as the role the movement has played in shaping public education reform. Finally, Sections 5 and 6 of Part 2 explore how the contemporary assault on public education has been fortified with the added advocacy from Republican politicians. This thesis adds to the study of the Christian nationalist movement’s attempt ii to undermine a democratic system of governance and its political utility-alliance with Republicans.