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A Field Guide to the Culture Wars: The Battle over Values from the Campaign Trail to the Classroom

A Field Guide to the Culture Wars: The Battle over Values from the Campaign Trail to the Classroom (Hardback)

£50.00
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Synopsis

Like any realignment in politics, the Democratic takeover of Congress in the 2006 midterm elections inspired a raft of instant analyses. One take on the results that is surely wrong is that the change in control of Congress and the spike in Democratic hopes for the 2008 presidential race mark an end to the culture wars that conventional wisdom blamed (or credited) for George W. Bush's re-election in 2004. This book sets the stage for a new consideration of the contemporary culture wars by examining their antecedents-from the Scopes trial to Prohibition to the controversy over the Supreme Court's desegregation and school-prayer rulings to loyalty-oath battles of the 1950s to the pre- Roe v. Wade campaign to liberalize abortion laws. Even during times of supposed conformism, Americans have been presented with competing claims about what sort of culture this is and how and to what extent government should reflect, and police, values.

The author covers such topics as same-sex marriage, stem cell research, intelligent design, and other hot button issues that are debated not just between the religious and secular, but more and more among the ranks of the religious themselves, where a religious left has emerged to counter arguments from the religious right. Anyone interested in the intersection of religion and politics, in the rise of the so-called moral majority, and in the current state of affairs with regard to values and public life in America will gain a better understanding from reading this book.

MICHAEL MCGOUGH is senior editorial writer for the LA Times, writing about law, national security, politics and religion. Prior to joining The Times, McGough worked more than two decades for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He has written for Slate.com, the New York Times, the Washington Post, The New Republic, Commonwealth, and other publications.

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