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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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Global struggles over women's roles, rights, and dress increasingly cast the secular and the religious in tense if not violent opposition. When advocates for equality speak in terms of rights and modern progress, or reactionaries ground their authority in religious and scriptural appeals, both tend to presume women's emancipation is ineluctably tied to secularization. Religion, the Secular, and the Politics of Sexual Difference upsets this certainty by drawing on diverse voices and traditions in studies that historicize, question, and test the implicit links between secularism and expanded freedoms for women. Rather than position secularism as the answer to conflicts over gender and sexuality, this volume shows both religion and the secular collaborate in creating the conditions that generate them.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Linell E. Cady
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Release: 2013-11-05
File: 344 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780231536042

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"Smith provides the reader with a powerful new framework for assessing the secularization of American public life, including a wealth of new insights and historical evidence on religion in American institutions. For those interested in religion's changing role in the public arena, this is essential reading, certain to have tremendous impact."—Roger Finke, Professor of Sociology and Religious Studies at Penn State and coauthor of Acts of Faith: Explaining the Human Side of Religion "Finally a much welcome sociological study of secularization that eschews assumptions of inevitability in favor of flesh-and-blood institutional histories, from the fields of education, journalism, and law to science, medicine, and even religion itself."—Ronald L. Numbers, Hilldale and William Coleman Professor of the History of Science and Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and author of The Creationists "Secularization has long been talked about as if it were the inevitable product of vast impersonal forces operating above our heads. In this fascinating collection, the authors descend from the stratosphere to investigate the power struggles that actually brought about secularization in education, law, and journalism. A wonderful, arresting book that gives secularization a human face."—Nicholas Wolterstorff, author of John Locke and the Ethics of Belief "This book is sure to evoke debate, agreement, contention, and future research by historians, sociologists, political scientists, and scholars of American religion."—Rhys H. Williams, editor, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion

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Genre: Religion
Author: Christian Smith
Publisher: Univ of California Press
Release: 2003-06-04
File: 484 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780520235618

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Are you interested in preserving the constitutional principle of church-state separation? Do you think a secular system is the only way to ensure freedom of religion and conscience for all? Do you want creationism out of classrooms, religious dogma out of health care, sectarian prayers out of government meetings, and taxpayer funding out of faith-based initiatives and programs that promote religious indoctrination? Think there s not much you can do about it? If so, as secular writer and activist Dan Arel demonstrates in word and deed, think again. Drawing on his experience fighting to keep $18 million in taxpayer money out of the construction of the Noah s Ark theme park in Kentucky, Arel makes clear that the only way to stop the Religious Right s assault on the wall separating church and state is for each of us to be active and vocal. He offers pragmatic lessons and guidance for protecting secularism, whether by raising awareness on social media, protesting in the public square, or knocking on doors in government corridors. Sharing not only his story but also the stories of other secular activists, he offers an inspirational and forceful call to action. For those who are waiting for others to stand up against antisecular forces, he reminds that each of us can make an individual difference and that ultimately we must be the wall separating church and state."

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Genre:
Author: Dan Arel
Publisher:
Release: 2016-10-01
File: 144 Pages
ISBN-13: 1634310942

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In Religious, Feminist, Activist, Laurel Zwissler investigates the political and religious identities of women who understand their social-justice activism as religiously motivated. Placing these women in historical context as faith-based activists for social change, this book discusses what their activities reveal about the public significance of religion in the pluralistic context of North America and in our increasingly globalized world. Zwissler's ethnographic interviews with feminist Catholics, Pagans, and United Church Protestants reveal radically different views of religious and political expression and illuminate how individual women and their communities negotiate issues of personal identity, spirituality, and political responsibility. Political activists of faith recount adventurous tales of run-ins with police, agonizing moments of fear and powerlessness in the face of global inequality, touching moments of community support, and successful projects that improve the lives of others. Religious, Feminist, Activist combines religion, politics, and globalization--subjects frequently discussed in macro terms--with individual personalities and intimate stories to provide a fresh perspective on what it means to be religiously and politically engaged. Zwissler also provides an insightful investigation into how religion and politics intersect for women on the political left.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Laurel Zwissler
Publisher: U of Nebraska Press
Release: 2018-04
File: 324 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781496205933

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We live in a time when the most appalling social injustices and unjust human sufferings no longer seem to generate the moral indignation and the political will needed both to combat them effectively and to create a more just and fair society. If God Were a Human Rights Activist aims to strengthen the organization and the determination of all those who have not given up the struggle for a better society, and specifically those that have done so under the banner of human rights. It discusses the challenges to human rights arising from religious movements and political theologies that claim the presence of religion in the public sphere. Increasingly globalized, such movements and the theologies sustaining them promote discourses of human dignity that rival, and often contradict, the one underlying secular human rights. Conventional or hegemonic human rights thinking lacks the necessary theoretical and analytical tools to position itself in relation to such movements and theologies; even worse, it does not understand the importance of doing so. It applies the same abstract recipe across the board, hoping that thereby the nature of alternative discourses and ideologies will be reduced to local specificities with no impact on the universal canon of human rights. As this strategy proves increasingly lacking, this book aims to demonstrate that only a counter-hegemonic conception of human rights can adequately face such challenges.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Boaventura de Sousa Santos
Publisher: Stanford University Press
Release: 2015-04-29
File: 152 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780804795036

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Anabaptists have often felt suspicious of American evangelicalism, and in turn evangelicals have found various reasons to dismiss the Anabaptist witness. Yet at various points in the past as well as the present, evangelicals and Anabaptists have found ample reason for conversation and much to appreciate about each other. The Activist Impulse represents the first book-length examination of the complex relationship between evangelicalism and Anabaptism in the past thirty years. It brings established experts and new voices together in an effort to explore the historical and theological intersection of these two rich traditions. Each of the essays provides fresh insight on at least one characteristic that both evangelicals and Anabaptists share--an impulse to engage society through the pursuit of active Christian witness.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Jared S. Burkholder
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
Release: 2012-04-04
File: 444 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781630876210

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A new group of Americans is challenging the reign of the Religious Right Today, nearly one in five Americans are nonbelievers - a rapidly growing group at a time when traditional Christian churches are dwindling in numbers - and they are flexing their muscles like never before. Yet we still see almost none of them openly serving in elected office, while Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, and many others continue to loudly proclaim the myth of America as a Christian nation. In Nonbeliever Nation, leading secular advocate David Niose explores what this new force in politics means for the unchallenged dominance of the Religious Right. Hitting on all the hot-button issues that divide the country – from gay marriage to education policy to contentious church-state battles – he shows how this movement is gaining traction, and fighting for its rights. Now, Secular Americans—a group comprised not just of atheists and agnostics, but lapsed Catholics, secular Jews, and millions of others who have walked away from religion—are mobilizing and forming groups all over the country (even atheist clubs in Bible-belt high schools) to challenge the exaltation of religion in American politics and public life. This is a timely and important look at how growing numbers of nonbelievers, disenchanted at how far America has wandered from its secular roots, are emerging to fight for equality and rational public policy.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: David Niose
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release: 2012-07-17
File: 272 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781137055286

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Surveys over the last twenty years have seen an ever-growing number of Americans disclaim religious affiliations and instead check the "none" box. In the first sociological exploration of organized secularism in America, Richard Cimino and Christopher Smith show how one segment of these "nones" have created a new, cohesive atheist identity through activism and the creation of communities. 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. This groundbreaking study will be essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the growing atheist movement in America.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Richard Cimino
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release: 2014-10-24
File: 224 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780199392933

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What should be the place of Shari'a - Islamic religious law - in predominantly Muslim societies of the world? In this book, a Muslim scholar and human rights activist envisions a positive and sustainable role for Shari'a, based on a profound rethinking of the relationship between religion and the secular state in all societies.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Abdullahi Ahmed An-Na'im Na
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Release: 2009-06-30
File: 336 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780674033764

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