The pentateuch and brass-bound gall : Huey P. Long and religious rhetoric.




Jessen, Tori K.

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Huey P. Long, governor of Louisiana from 1928-1932 and U.S. senator from 1932-1935, is not remembered by historians as a religious figure. In light of his outrageous personal behavior, power-mongering, and political corruption, it is easy to understand why. However, a closer inspection of the primary sources details a rich well of religious rhetoric that was employed across Huey P. Long’s life and was especially concentrated in the latter half of his career. Not only was religious language used frequently by Long, in fact, forming the backbone of his "Share Our Wealth" platform, but a specifically spiritual image of "messiah" or "savior" was attached to his person. This thesis argues that, far from being an outlier in Long’s repertoire of political tactics, religion and its influence was a major thread in his behavior and a favorite tool used throughout his career, regardless of any personal relationship with religion.



Huey P. Long., Religious rhetoric., Politics., Louisiana.