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This collection features more than two dozen narratives by atheists from different backgrounds across the United States. Ranging in age, race, sexual orientation, and religious upbringing, these individuals address deconversion, community building, parenting, and romantic relationships, providing a nuanced look at living without a god in a predominantly Christian nation. These narratives illuminate the complexities and consequences for nonbelievers in the United States. Stepping away from religious belief can have serious social and existential ramifications, forcing atheists to discover new ways to live meaningfully without a religious community. Yet shedding the constraints of a formal belief system can also be a freeing experience. Ultimately, this volume shows that claiming an atheist identity is anything but an act isolated from the other dimensions of the self. Upending common social, political, and psychological assumptions about atheists, this collection helps carve out a more accepted space for this minority within American society.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Melanie E. Brewster
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Release: 2014-06-03
File: 272 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780231537001

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Explores how atheists have gone from a small group to having a large impact on today's most important issues, ranging from abortion to gay marriage, and looks at why America has been polarized along religious lines.

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Genre: Religion
Author: David Williamson
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Release: 2013
File: 144 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781442218499

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From the New York Times bestselling author of American Fascists and the NBCC finalist for War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning comes this timely and compelling work about new atheists: those who attack religion to advance the worst of global capitalism, intolerance and imperial projects. Chris Hedges, who graduated from seminary at Harvard Divinity School, has long been a courageous voice in a world where there are too few. He observes that there are two radical, polarized and dangerous sides to the debate on faith and religion in America: the fundamentalists who see religious faith as their prerogative, and the new atheists who brand all religious belief as irrational and dangerous. Both sides use faith to promote a radical agenda, while the religious majority, those with a commitment to tolerance and compassion as well as to their faith, are caught in the middle. The new atheists, led by Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens and Sam Harris, do not make moral arguments about religion. Rather, they have created a new form of fundamentalism that attempts to permeate society with ideas about our own moral superiority and the omnipotence of human reason. I Don't Believe in Atheists critiques the radical mindset that rages against religion and faith. Hedges identifies the pillars of the new atheist belief system, revealing that the stringent rules and rigid traditions in place are as strict as those of any religious practice. Hedges claims that those who have placed blind faith in the morally neutral disciplines of reason and science create idols in their own image -- a sin for either side of the spectrum. He makes an impassioned, intelligent case against religious and secular fundamentalism, which seeks to divide the world into those worthy of moral and intellectual consideration and those who should be condemned, silenced and eradicated. Hedges shatters the new atheists' assault against religion in America, and in doing so, makes way for new, moderate voices to join the debate. This is a book that must be read to understand the state of the battle about faith.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Chris Hedges
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release: 2009-03-10
File: 224 Pages
ISBN-13: 1439158363

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A much-maligned minority throughout American history, atheists have been cast as a threat to the nation’s moral fabric, barred from holding public office, and branded as irreligious misfits in a nation chosen by God. Yet village atheists—as these godless freethinkers came to be known by the close of the nineteenth century—were also hailed for their gutsy dissent from stultifying pieties and for posing a necessary secularist challenge to the entanglements of church and state. In Village Atheists, Leigh Eric Schmidt explores the complex cultural terrain that unbelievers have long had to navigate in their fight to secure equal rights and liberties in American public life. He rebuilds the history of American secularism from the ground up, giving flesh and blood to these outspoken infidels. Village Atheists demonstrates that the secularist vision for the United States proved to be anything but triumphant in a country where faith and citizenship were—and still are—closely interwoven.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Leigh Eric Schmidt
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Release: 2018-12-18
File: 360 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780691183114

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This slender, conversational, but methodologically sound treatise on the inner world of atheists will pleasantly surprise readers accustomed to the soporific 'academese' of most sociological studies...The study is limited in scope, but the flaws are so forthrightly acknowledged and the writing is so fresh, honest, compelling and entertaining, that it is bound to become an important launching point for more studies of what makes atheists tick.-Publishers WeeklyAccording to polls, almost all Americans believe in God. So atheists naturally stand out as dissident nay-sayers, especially when challenging the use of God in the Pledge of Allegiance, or the display of religious symbols in public places. Such protests make many Americans wonder about the motivations and character of militant unbelievers.But disbelief is spreading. After reviewing the mounting evidence that organized religion is declining in many countries, this accessible book provides the first scientific study of active atheists. The authors surveyed nearly 300 members of atheist organizations in the United States. Besides soliciting these nonbelievers' level of education, political leanings, etc., the researchers sought to understand how each respondent had become an atheist. Had they ever believed in God, or had they never? Had they paid a price for their atheism?Three chapters describe the levels of dogmatism, zealotry, and religious prejudice found among the active atheists. These results, compared with others obtained from more ordinary samples of atheists (and strong fundamentalists), often surprised the authors. Uniquely, the book features a chapter in which the atheists give their reaction to the study and its often-surprising findings. Another chapter breaks down the answers a large Canadian sample gave to the measures used in the American study, according to how religious the respondent was-from atheist to agnostic to four different levels of theistic intensity. A clear finding emerged: the more religious a group was, the more their personalities, prejudices, and beliefs separated them from everyone else.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Bruce E. Hunsberger
Publisher: Prometheus Books
Release: 2006
File: 159 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781615923144

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"According to Cimino and Smith, the new upsurge of atheists is a reaction to the revival of religious fervor in American politics since 1980. Feeling overlooked and underrepresented in the public sphere, atheists have employed a wide variety of strategies--some evangelical, some based on identity politics--to defend and assert themselves against their ideological opponents. These strategies include building and maintaining communities, despite the absence of the kinds of shared rituals, texts, and laws that help to sustain organized religions. Drawing on in-depth interviews with self-identified atheist, secularist, and humanist leaders and activists, as well as extensive observations and analysis of secular gatherings and media, Cimino and Smith illustrate how atheists organize and align themselves toward common goals, and how media--particularly web-based media--have proven invaluable in connecting atheists to one another and in creating a powerful virtual community. Cimino and Smith suggest that secularists rely not only on the Internet for community-building, but on their own new forms of ritual."--Publisher's Web site.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Richard Cimino
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Release: 2014
File: 196 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780199986323

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A former preacher tell why he abandoned the guidance of the Bible to follow the dictates of own conscience.

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Genre: BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY
Author: Dan Barker
Publisher: Ulysses Press
Release: 2008
File: 376 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781569756775

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If the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects religious liberty, why doesn’t it protect atheists? God occupies our nation’s consciousness, even defining to many what it means to be American. Nonbelievers have often had second-class legal status and have had to fight for their rights as citizens. As R. Laurence Moore and Isaac Kramnick demonstrate in their sharp and convincing work, avowed atheists were derided since the founding of the nation. Even Thomas Paine fell into disfavor and his role as a patriot forgotten. Popular Republican Robert Ingersoll could not be elected in the nineteenth century due to his atheism, and the suffragette Elizabeth Cady Stanton was shunned when she questioned biblical precepts about women’s roles. Moore and Kramnick lay out this fascinating history and the legal cases that have questioned religious supremacy. It took until 1961 for the Supreme Court to ban religious tests for state officials, despite Article 6 of the Constitution. Still, every one of the fifty states continues to have God in its constitution. The authors discuss these cases and more current ones, such as Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., which address whether personal religious beliefs supersede secular ones. In Godless Citizens in a Godly Republic, the authors also explore the dramatic rise of an "atheist awakening" and the role of organizations intent on holding the country to the secular principles it was founded upon.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Isaac Kramnick
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Release: 2018-08-21
File: 240 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780393254976

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In recent years, members of minority religions and atheists have rightly taken advantage of Supreme Court decisions that open up government funding, institutions, and property to participate in public life alongside the Christian majority. Jay Wexler argues for the importance of this movement and travels around the country to meet some of the people on its front line.

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Genre: Law
Author: Jay Wexler
Publisher: Redwood Press
Release: 2020-09-22
File: 216 Pages
ISBN-13: 1503614999

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"Charts author's growth from local atheist activist to president of American Atheists and creator and executive producer of the Reason Rally, and unapologetically defends the words and actions that have made him and his organization both loved and hated"--

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Genre: Biography & Autobiography
Author: David Silverman
Publisher: Pitchstone Llc
Release: 2014
File: 200 Pages
ISBN-13: 1939578051

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