Review by Choice Review
Scholars of religion and history have been particularly sensitive to the religious dimension of political activity in the US. It is refreshing to find a political scientist demonstrating the same nuanced understanding of the role of religious values in the shaping of public debate on social policy. Hofrenning (political science, St. Olaf College) ably captures the distinctive contribution of religious lobbyists, namely their desire to "seek nothing less than a transformation of American politics to a higher moral plane." Hofrenning understands that the "prophetic politics" of religious lobbyists is much deeper and more comprehensive than the kind of politics that simply advances institutional interests and can be resolved simply by political compromise. He has a commendable sympathy for the diversity in the moral agendas of different lobbying groups, as well as for the tensions that emerge between the "prophetic lobbyists" and their constituents in the local parishes and denominational organizations. His book should provide an excellent resource for those interested in tracking, on a much more sophisticated basis, the role of religion in the current morally charged political environment. General; undergraduate through professional.
Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
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