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Gospel of DisunionReligion and Separatism in the Antebellum South$
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Mitchell Snay

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780807846872

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9781469616155_Snay

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Religion and the formation of a Southern national ideology

Religion and the formation of a Southern national ideology

(p.181) 6 Religion and the formation of a Southern national ideology
Gospel of Disunion

Mitchell Snay

University of North Carolina Press

The chapter focuses on the formation of Southern national ideology. Examining the creation of Southern religious nationalism provides another perspective for viewing the strong relationship between the development of Southern separatism and religion. The chapter presents a comparative analysis between the writings of Northern and Southern clergymen and it is further stated that the rhetorical unity between them caused the development of Southern religious nationalism. Both Northern and Southern clergymen expressed similar views on religion and politics and provided a providential interpretation of history. During the secession crisis, they looked back to biblical history for guidance and justification. The political disunion threatening the Union was depicted as a result of judgment by God. The concept of the United States as the Redeemer Nation is presented. Finally, the chapter looks into the incompatibility of the Northern and Southern clergymen regarding the issue of slavery.

Keywords:   Southern national ideology, Southern separatism, Redeemer Nation, political disunion, Southern clergymen, Northern clergymen, religious nationalism, rhetorical unity, secession crisis

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