Christian Patriotism and the Politics of the Extreme Right in Post-Civil Rights Era America

Winter, Aaron (2006) Christian Patriotism and the Politics of the Extreme Right in Post-Civil Rights Era America. PhD thesis, UNSPECIFIED.

Full text not available from this repository.


This thesis examines how the American extreme right transformed in the post-civil rights era, or what is termed the “fifth era”, between 1976 and 1995. I argue that the extreme right underwent a radical re-politicisation in the mid-1970s, in response to the perceived effects of the political developments of the civil rights era on its traditional white Christian constituency, and the failure of its predecessors to maintain white supremacy and defend the nation. What occurred was a rejection of traditional hegemonic extreme right organisations, ideologies and strategies and their replacement by newer, more radical, counter-hegemonic ones. These were based around opposition to the state and political mainstream, most notably the shift from traditional white supremacy and nationalism to racial separatism, and from electoral activism to armed insurgency. Furthermore, I argue that this historical paradigm shift requires a corresponding analytic paradigm shift. This is because the majority of existing analysis not only fails to address this transformation but is also based on paradigms established in previous eras and based on traditional characteristics that the fifth era extreme right themselves rejected because of their overlap with the mainstream right, failure or lack of relevance. This thesis focuses on the case of the Christian Patriot movement and its three most prominent representatives, Posse Comitatus, Aryan Nations and The Order, which dominated the era and played a role in each major era-defining event and ideological and strategic initiative. I examine the movement’s history, ideology, identity and strategies both in comparison to those of their predecessors and through the development of the fifth era itself. In doing so, I illustrate both how the movement responded to political developments of the post-civil rights era and how this historical paradigm shift manifested, as well as propose a new analytic approach to the extreme right through my method of discourse analysis.

Item Type:
Thesis (PhD)
ID Code:
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
23 Nov 2022 10:45
Last Modified:
12 Sep 2023 00:54