The Environment Contains no Right and Left: Navigating Ideology, Religion, and Views of the Environment in Contemporary American Society

Todd Jared LeVasseur

Abstract


This paper explores, analyzes, and investigates how the political ideologies of American citizens and their elected representatives interact with views put forth by corporate media to help shape various ideologies about environmental issues in contemporary America. I specifically enter into this area of exploration by focusing on one variable, the variable of religion. Therefore, in this paper I seek to help elucidate broad patterns and understandings of environmental issues in America as they have developed since the beginning of the modern environmental movement, focusing especially on the role religion has and is playing in this process. The paper is driven by identifying two major groups in American society, Liberal/nurturant parent, and Conservative/strict father, and how the core values of each group influence their ideological approaches to religion, environmentalism, and politics. The investigation is undertaken in the larger context of worsening climate change, suggesting that the interplay of religious, political, and environmentalist ideology of the past few decades presages further ideological shifts in the coming decades about our changing biosphere

Keywords


ideology, environmentalism, religion, ecology, framing, social construct, climate change, conflict

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