ファンダメンタリストの政治化現象--1980年代の「新宗教右翼」の研究 [in Japanese] Politicization of the Fundamentalists : A Study on the "New Religious Right" in the 1980's [in Japanese]
Access this Article
Search this Article
The "New Religious Right" which is represented by the Moral Majority is a unique religiopolitical phenomenon in the 1980's in America. The New Religious Right appeared in the political field just before the 1980 election. It has an intimate relation with the political New Right. In other words, leaders of the New Right approached TV preachers like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson in order to accomplish their political goals. In Section II, in relation with the election in 1980,I introduce the situation of the New Right, TV church, and three major organizations of the New Religious Right, which are Christian Voice, Religious Roundtable, and the Moral Majority. I also examine, in this Section, the social and political issues which the Moral Majority has treated as moral issues. The New Religious Right is not a Christian organization, but is formed by Protestants, Catholics and Jews who share the same moral standard. However, most of the members are so-called Fundamentalists. They were called the "sleeping giant" in the American political arena. I analyze why they were separated from politics and why they were politicized in the 1980 election in connection with their theological background and the social situation in the 1970's. In Section III, I make it clear that the Moral Majority is not the majority among the American people, and that it does not represent the majority of conservative Christians in America. I also examine the possibility and problems of the future of the Moral Majority. Leaders of the Moral Majority are trying to define Fundamentalism in a different way from what used to be in order to justify their politicization. The problem is whether or not the supporters of the Moral Majority, who are traditional Fundamentalists, can accept that kind of change. I think there is a possibility that the gap between the leaders and supporters of the Moral Majority will become much bigger. The second problem about the future of the Moral Majority is the relation with the Reagan administration. It seems that Reagan has been in sympathy with the New Religious Right, but I can see a few hints that he does not think seriously of the New Religious Right. By analyzing Reagan's attitude toward the Abortion Bill, I try to prove his real intention. The more Reagan tries to be the President for the real majority of the American people, the more the Moral Majority will realize that they are not the majority. The Moral Majority may not be able to maintain its influence to the political situation in the future, and also it has many problems which the liberals are criticizing. However, the context which politicized the Fundamentalists has not yet changed. It is the "vacuum* of the value system in America. It is not the moment when both liberals and conservatives should show contempt for each other. They should have dialogue in order to reconstruct the real communities in American society.
- Doshisha American studies
Doshisha American studies (20), p37-51, 1984
Alternative:Center for American Studies, Doshisha University