Next month, Temple University Press will publish God Talk: Experimenting With the Religious Causes of Public Opinion by Paul Djupe (Denison University) and Brian Calfano (Missouri State University). The publisher’s description follows.
Religion’s influence on public opinion, politics, and candidates has been widely discussed in political science for a generation. God Talk is the first volume that uses experimental methodology to establish whether and how that influence works. Paul Djupe and Brian Calfano provide an unprecedented look at how religious cues, values, and identity-driven appeals impact candidate selection, trust, interest group support, and U.S. public opinion about tolerance, the environment, foreign policy, and related issues. By situating their disparate, randomly assigned interventions within the broader framework of elite-based influence, the authors apply their new methodology to three questions: How do clergy affect congregation members? How are religious elites and groups and their public arguments evaluated? With what effect do political elites use religion? The results of their research provide a compelling framework for understanding the links between religion and politics.