White Christian Nationalism and Youth Development in the USA

Andrew Nalani, Hirokazu Yoshikawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


White Christian nationalism is a political ideology and cultural framework that views the USA as an explicitly and exceptionally Christian nation. It is a recent example of centuries of efforts to link a single religious faith to nation building, in this case to maintain a White supremacist and patriarchal society. Although White Christian nationalism has been investigated extensively in other disciplines such as political science, history, sociology, and religion, this article delineates its consequences for youth as well as solutions to interrupt its societal proliferation to promote more positive youth outcomes. Drawing on scholarship across the social sciences, we first define White Christian nationalism in the USA as master narrative, political force, and social movement. We then discuss how these forces affect youth through four types of activity settings. Finally, we propose interventions across activity settings of youth development to interrupt the effects of this ideology. We call on scholars to understand White Christian nationalism as a powerful ideology affecting youth as well as society at large.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)551-565
Number of pages15
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2023


  • Christian nationalism
  • Identity
  • Intervention
  • Polarization
  • Race
  • Youth development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Social Sciences


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