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Religious Nationalism and Perceptions of Muslims and Islam

  • Allyson F. Shortle (a1) and Ronald Keith Gaddie (a1)

We test for relationships between anti-Muslim attitudes and opinion and competing religious identity and religious belief variables in an evangelical Christian constituency. Original survey data from a statewide sample of 508 likely voters in Oklahoma are subjected to a robust regression analysis to determine (1) indicators of holding Christian nationalist beliefs and (2) the relationship between belief measures of Christian nationalism, evangelical Christian identity, and subsequent anti-Muslim sentiment. Christian nationalism is more prevalent among self-identified evangelicals. Christian nationalist beliefs and strong belief in Biblical literalism are significantly related to negative and restrictive views of Muslims. Anti-Muslim sentiments in the form of general disapproval and the desire to limit Muslim worship are shaped more by beliefs than identities or behaviors. Evangelical self-identification does not help us disentangle domestic opinion regarding Muslims as well as measures that disentangle beliefs from identity.

Corresponding author
Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Allyson F. Shortle, Department of Political Science, The University of Oklahoma, 205 Dale Hall Tower, Norman, OK 73019. E-mail:; or Ronald Keith Gaddie, Department of Political Science, The University of Oklahoma, 205 Dale Hall Tower, Norman, OK 73019. E-mail:
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Politics and Religion
  • ISSN: 1755-0483
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