Neall W. PogueJan 18, 2024
The Nature of the Religious Right
The Struggle between Conservative Evangelicals and the Environmental Movement
Cornell University Press 2022
How does the Bible instruct humans to interact with the Earth? Over the last few decades, white conservative evangelical Christians have increasingly taken positions against environmental protections. To understand why, Meghan Cochran talks with Neall W. Pogue about his book The Nature of the Religious Right: The Struggle between Conservative Evangelicals and the Environmental Movement (Cornell University Press, 2022) in which he examines how the religious right became a political force known for hostility toward environmental legislation.
Until the 1990s, theologically based, eco-friendly philosophies of Christian environmental stewardship were uncontroversial. However, when some in the evangelical community began to lean towards environmental activism in response to human caused climate change, their effort was overwhelmed by some conservative leaders who stressed a position against environmentalism. They ridiculed conservation efforts, embraced conspiracy theories, and refuted the expanding scientific literature. Pogue explains how different ideas of nature helped to construct a conservative evangelical political movement that rejected long-standing beliefs regarding Christian environmental stewardship.
- The Gospel of Climate Skepticism: Why Evangelical Christians Oppose Action on Climate Change by Robin Globus Veldman (University of California Press, 2019)
- Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right by Arlie Russell Hochschild (The New Press, 2016)
Meghan Cochran studies belief and action as a technologist working in customer experience and as a student of religion, business, and literature.