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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 majoritarian entanglements of church and state. "Village Atheists" 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. Leigh Eric Schmidt rebuilds the history of American secularism from the ground up, giving flesh and blood to these outspoken infidels, including itinerant lecturer Samuel Porter Putnam; rough-edged cartoonist Watson Heston; convicted blasphemer Charles B. Reynolds; and atheist sex reformer Elmina D. Slenker. He describes their everyday confrontations with devout neighbors and evangelical ministers, their strained efforts at civility alongside their urge to ridicule and offend their Christian compatriots. Schmidt examines the multilayered world of social exclusion, legal jeopardy, yet also civic acceptance in which American atheists and secularists lived. He shows how it was only in the middle decades of the twentieth century that nonbelievers attained a measure of legal vindication, yet even then they often found themselves marginalized on the edges of a God-trusting, Bible-believing nation. "Village Atheists" reveals how the secularist vision for the United States proved to be anything but triumphant and age-defining for a country where faith and citizenship were--and still are--routinely interwoven.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Leigh Eric Schmidt
Publisher:
Release: 2016-09-27
File: 360 Pages
ISBN-13: 0691168644

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Genre: Apologetics
Author: Hank Hanegraaff
Publisher:
Release: 2009
File: 64 Pages
ISBN-13: OCLC:1049173018

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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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Due to its Constitution, and particularly to that Constitution’s First Amendment, the relationship between religion and politics in the United States is rather unusual. This is especially the case concerning the manner with which religious terminology is defined via the discourse adopted by the United States Supreme Court, and the larger American judicial system. Focusing on the religious term of Atheism, this book presents both the discourse itself, in the form of case decisions, as well as an analysis of that discourse. The work thus provides an essential introduction and discussion of both Atheism as a concept and the influence that judicial decisions have on the way we perceive the meaning of religious terminology in a national context. As a singular source on the Supreme, Circuit, and District Court cases concerning Atheism and its judicial definition, the book offers convenient access to this discourse for researchers and students. The discursive analysis further provides an original theoretical insight into how the term ‘Atheism’ has been judicially defined. As such, it will be a valuable resource for scholars of religion and law, as well as those interested in the definition and study of Atheism.

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Genre: Law
Author: Ethan G. Quillen
Publisher: Routledge
Release: 2018-05-20
File: 202 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781315278353

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This book is a response to Letter to a Christian Nation by Sam Harris. Joel McDurmon tackles popular atheism in a popular but cogent way. - Publisher.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Joel McDurmon
Publisher:
Release: 2007-05-01
File: 103 Pages
ISBN-13: 0915815680

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To his fellow conservatives, John Derbyshire makes a plea: Don't be seduced by this nonsense about "the politics of hope." Skepticism, pessimism, and suspicion of happy talk are the true characteristics of an authentically conservative temperament. And from Hobbes and Burke through Lord Salisbury and Calvin Coolidge, up to Pat Buchanan and Mark Steyn in our own time, these beliefs have kept the human race from blindly chasing its utopian dreams right off a cliff. Recently, though, various comforting yet fundamentally idiotic notions of political correctness and wishful thinking have taken root beyond the "Kumbaya"-singing, we're-all-one crowd. These ideas have now infected conservatives, the very people who really should know better. The Republican Party has been derailed by legions of fools and poseurs wearing smiley-face masks. Think rescuing the economy by condemning our descendents to lives of spirit-crushing debt. Think nation-building abroad while we slowly disintegrate at home. Think education and No Child Left Behind. . . . But don't think about it too much, because if you do, you'll quickly come to the logical conclusion: We are doomed. Need more convincing? Dwell on the cheerful promises of the diversity cult and the undeniable reality of the oncoming demographic disaster. Contemplate the feminization of everything, or take a good look at what passes for art these days. Witness the rise of culturism and the death of religion. Bow down before your new master, the federal apparatchik. Finally, ask yourself: How certain am I that the United States of America will survive, in any recognizable form, until, say, 2022? A scathing, mordantly funny romp through today's dismal and dismaler political and cultural scene, We Are Doomed provides a long-overdue dose of reality, revealing just how the GOP has been led astray in recent years–and showing that had conservatives held on to their fittingly pessimistic outlook, America's future would be far brighter. Ladies and gentlemen, it's time to embrace the Audacity of Hopelessness. From the Hardcover edition.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: John Derbyshire
Publisher: Crown Forum
Release: 2009-09-29
File: 272 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780307462480

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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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James Morrow's Galápagos Regained centers on the fictional Chloe Bathurst, an unemployed Victorian actress who finds work on Charles Darwin's estate, nurturing the strange birds, exotic lizards, and giant tortoises he brought back from his trip around the world. When Chloe gets wind of the Great God Contest, sponsored by the Percy Bysshe Shelley Society—£10,000 to the first petitioner who can prove or disprove the existence of a Supreme Being—she decides that Mr. Darwin's materialist theory of speciation might just turn the trick. (If Nature gave God nothing to do, maybe He was never around in the first place.) Before she knows it, her ambitions send her off on a wild adventure—a voyage by brigantine to Brazil, a steamboat trip up the Amazon, a hot-air balloon flight across the Andes—bound for the Galápagos archipelago, where she intends to collect the live specimens through which she might demonstrate evolutionary theory to the contest judges.

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Genre: Fiction
Author: James Morrow
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release: 2015-01-06
File: 496 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781466880924

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Finally, social scientists have begun to attempt to understand religious behavior rather than to discredit it as irrational, ignorant, or foolish—and Rodney Stark and Roger Finke have played a major role in this new approach. Acknowledging that science cannot assess the supernatural side of religion (and therefore should not claim to do so), Stark and Finke analyze the observable, human side of faith. In clear and engaging prose, the authors combine explicit theorizing with animated discussions as they move from considering the religiousness of individuals to the dynamics of religious groups and then to the religious workings of entire societies as religious groups contend for support. The result is a comprehensive new paradigm for the social-scientific study of religion.

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Genre: Religion
Author: Rodney Stark
Publisher: Univ of California Press
Release: 2000-08-01
File: 343 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780520924345

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CONTRIBUTORS: Mustafa Abu-Sway, Al-Quds University, Jerusalem Asma Afsaruddin, Indiana University Reinhold Bernhardt, Basel Univeristy David Burrell, CSC, University of Notre Dame Catherine Cornille, Boston College Gavin D'Costa, University of Bristol David M. Elcott, New York University Joseph Lumbard, Brandeis University Jonathan Magonet, Louis Baeck Institute, London John Makransky, Boston College Anantanand Rambachan, St. Olaf College Deepak Sarma, Case Western University Judith Simmer-Brown, Naropa University Mark Unno, University of Oregon

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Genre: Religion
Author: Catherine Cornille
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
Release: 2009-08-01
File: 304 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781630874414

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