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Catholic and Evangelical élites in dialogue and alliance

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Throughout their histories the Evangelical and Catholic communities have been traditional opponents. Seldom have they agreed, and never have they joined to work as one within the US society and polity. However, beginning in the early 1990s some small, self-identifying élites from each religious community sought out in the other visible persons of similar ideological and moral commitment. Advances the context of that dialogue between these micro-élites, proposes the application of classical élite theory to explain the dialogue better. Generates a seven-postulate hypothesis to answer the question posed by the context and the application of élite theory: can self-selected micro-élites maintain their alliance and accommodation for a significant period of time? Given that these are integrative and pattern maintenance élites (not the more usual ruling and adaptive ones) the application of élite theory offers an unconventional understanding of alliance building, as well as an uncommon insight into religious co-operation and political accommodation by micro-élites in contemporary US politics.
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Keywords: Alliances; Communications; Community Relations; Politics; Religion; Usa

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 1995

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