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Countersymbols and the Constitution of Resistance in American Fundamentalism, 1919–1922

Jonathan J. Edwards
Rhetoric and Public Affairs
Vol. 17, No. 3 (Fall 2014), pp. 421-454
DOI: 10.14321/rhetpublaffa.17.3.0421
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.14321/rhetpublaffa.17.3.0421
Page Count: 34
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Countersymbols and the Constitution of Resistance in American Fundamentalism, 1919–1922
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Abstract

Christian fundamentalism is a doctrinal system and an argumentative frame, but it also functions as a “countermovement” whose members advocate resistance from a purported place of ecclesial and political marginalization. This article explores the roots of early fundamentalist resistance rhetoric as it manifested through a series of “countersymbols”—oppositional condensation symbols that invoke the corruption of an idealized community by its other to rhetorically justify resistance as necessary response.

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