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Religious Freedom between Truth and Tactic

Religious Freedom between Truth and Tactic

Chapter:
(p.135) Chapter Eleven Religious Freedom between Truth and Tactic
Source:
Politics of Religious Freedom
Author(s):
Samuel Moyn
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226248646.003.0014

This essay charts the dramatic shift in orientation among conservative Catholics in the United States, for whom, prior to Vatican II, religious freedom had been rejected as a catalyst of secularism. Responding to anxieties about Soviet Russia, conservative Catholic Americans recuperated and re-purposed religious freedom in an effort to stave off secularism and communism. This “Catholic pivot” also opened the door for contemporary alliances with evangelical Protestants, for whom religious freedom stands not as part of a secular culture of individual choice and social tolerance but as a fundamental principle of religious morality.

Keywords:   Catholics, Catholicism, Evangelicals, Evangelicalism, religious freedom, Vatican II, United States

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