"A must-read for all Americans who want to understand the shifting spiritual allegiances of the strengthening white nationalist movements throughout the U.S. and Europe."—Publishers Weekly
"Berry does a fine job bringing together the ideological, ‘biological,’ and theological strands of belief that form the bones and sinews of the race movement in the United States."—Jeffrey Kaplan, School of international and Public Affairs, Jilin University, Changchun, China
"A powerful, original, and extremely timely book. Tracing the history of white nationalism in the United States, Berry examines a series of hugely influential but today little known figures and movements, revealing their key role in the broader landscape of American religious, political, and racist discourses. Perhaps most importantly, Berry's book also highlights the continuities between these twentieth century racist currents and our own historical moment, with the rise of the alt-right movement, and the resurgence of white nationalism."—Hugh Urban, author of The Church of Scientology: A History of a New Religion
"A chilling account of the development of a vexing and dangerous form of anti-Christian racial protectionism that has taken hold in some corners of the American far-right."—Michael J. McVicar, Assistant Professor of Religion, Florida State University
"A rich and deep overview of major white nationalist movements, crafting a book that will enlighten sociologists of religion, race, social movements, and politics."—Sociology of Religion: A Quarterly Review
"Blood and Faith provides welcome clarity to the racist Right and where it fits in America’s broader religious and ideological milieu."—Politics and Religion
"A book that promises to become a classic treatment of American white nationalist groups that have jettisoned Christianity in favor of ideologies that justify hate."—The Association for the Academic Study of New Religions
Beginning with Ronald Reagan’s 1980 presidential campaign, the term “religious right” entered the popular lexicon, coming to signify a politically and socially conservative form of Christianity that informs American conservatism to this day. Less well known are other ideologies that have influenced the far right since well before 1980, including Odinism, Creativity, and racialized atheism. The rising popularity of these extreme groups and their philosophical grounding in racial politics and religious bigotry has caused a shift away from—and often hostility toward—even racist forms of Christianity among American white nationalists.
In Blood and Faith, Berry deftly explores the causes of this shift, rooted largely in response to racialized anxieties that are by no means exclusive to extremists in America. Focusing on the challenges these tensions pose for contemporary white nationalists seeking access to mainstream conservative politics, Berry also considers the recent rise of the so-called “alt-right” and the unifying issues of anti-multiculturalism and anti-immigration around which moderate and fringe groups have rallied. Blood and Faith is a provocative investigation of the complex, evolving role of white nationalism and an urgent reminder of the outsized influence of religion in American political life.
About the Author
Damon T. Berry is assistant professor in the religious studies department at St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York. He has published articles in the Journal of Hate Studies and Security Journal.
Series: Religion and Politics
6 x 9, 284 pages