Latin America's Neo-Reformation: Religion's Influence on Contemporary Politics

December 30, 2004

In this work, Patterson examines three hypotheses about the differing forms of political engagement by Catholicism and evangelicalism in Latin America. Focusing on the intersection between religion and politics in Brazil, Chile, and Mexico, in particular, Patterson evaluates the “different religions, different politics” hypothesis that sees Protestants’ attitudes toward and involvement in politics as markedly different from that of Catholic believers. Some of the specific claims that are examined include the notion that Protestants’ attitudes are more compatible with democratic culture, and that higher levels of religious participation among Protestants lead to increased political engagement.

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