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Pers Soc Psychol Bull. 2009 Mar;35(3):271-82. doi: 10.1177/0146167208328064. Epub 2008 Dec 29.

Race as a moderator of the relationship between religiosity and political alignment.

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Department of Psychology, Arizona State University, P.O. Box 871104, Tempe, AZ 85287-1104, USA.


Religiosity, especially religious fundamentalism, is often assumed to have an inherent connection with conservative politics. This article proposes that the relationship varies by race in the United States. In Study 1, race moderated the relationships between religiosity indicators and political alignment in a nationally representative sample. In Study 2, the effect replicated in a student sample with more reliable measures. Among both Black and Latino Americans, the relationship between religiosity and conservative politics is far weaker than it is among White Americans, and it is sometimes altogether absent. In Study 3, a tradition-focused view of religion was found to more strongly mediate the link between religiosity and political attitudes among Whites than it did among Blacks and Latinos. It is argued that the relationship between religiosity and political alignment is best understood as a product of cultural-historical conditions associated with group memberships.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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