Informed Perspectives: Religion in the Race for the White House

Oct 12

12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Zoom Webinar

What role will religion play in the most important presidential election in generations? In a webinar informed by both journalistic and academic perspectives, The New York Times’ opinion writer Elizabeth Bruenig and UVA Professor Charles Mathewes will discuss how religion is shaping the 2020 race for the White House. What is the function of religious coalitions in modern American politics? Will shifting religious identities and alliances have any impact on the election results? Will the “religious left” emerge as a distinct power base in the coming weeks, and can it serve as a counterweight to the cultural and political dominance exercised by the “religious right”? Evan Sandsmark, a PhD candidate in Religious Studies at the University of Virginia will moderate the conversation.

Informed Perspectives brings together scholars, journalists, and documentarians to explore the relationship between religion, race, and politics.

Sponsored by the Luce/ACLS Program in Religion, Journalism & International Affairs

(Above: AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)


Elizabeth Bruenig is an opinion writer at The New York Times, where she writes on Christianity, politics, and morality in public life. Previously, she was an opinion writer at The Washington Post, where she published a Pulitzer-nominated investigation of an unprosecuted sexual assault in her Texas hometown. She has worked as an editor in The Post’s “Outlook” section and as a staff writer at The New Republic, and prior to her work in journalism, received her Master’s of Philosophy in Christian theology at the University of Cambridge as a Marshall Scholar. She lives with her husband and daughters in New England.


Charles Mathewes is the Carolyn M. Barbour Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia, specializing in Christian theology and religious ethics. He is the author of several books, including Evil and the Augustinian Tradition, A Theology of Public Life, and The Republic of Grace: Augustinian Thoughts in Dark Times. His newest book, A Future for Political Theology, is forthcoming.