After September 11, news media reported that U.S. president George W. Bush used overly religious language. The "theologian in chief" was believed to promote his personal agenda as a born again Christian. Such views, however, are a striking misinterpretation. This study shows that Bush's references to God and the idea that America must fulfill God's work on earth can all be explained through the concept of American civil religion.
" Janz's study is a marvel. It evidences that Bush's use of religiously symbolic words simply upholds an American tradition going back 200 years to its first president George Washington. As Janz brilliantly analyzed, the only difference is that the world noticed, and reacted."
(JENIK RADON, Columbia University)
" This superb study provides an essential contribution to the understanding of the role of Civil Religion in American national identity. The result that Bush's does not use significant evangelical references is very surprising and contradicts the dominant discourse in Europe."