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  • O'Hair, Madalyn Murray: Madalyn Murray O’Hair (1919-1995) was instrumental in banning Bible readings in public schools and founded one of the largest organizations of atheists in America.
  • Secular Movement: Gaining prominence in the mid-20th century, the modern secular movement pushed for a society without religion.
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ARDA Dictionary
  • Secular Humanism:The lack of connection, or desire to connect to the transcendent, the sacred, God or the supernatural (Koenig et al. 2012: 47). It is a philosophy that involves beliefs, behavior and relationships valued by their own intrinsic merit. In this way, humans are believed to be capable of good without the need to believe in God or the divine. Secular humanists often are categorized, along with atheists and agnostics, as “non-religious” given they do not see the need for religion in instilling morality in society.
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Citations are taken from the Sociology of Religion Searchable Bibliographic Database, created and updated by Anthony J. Blasi (Ph.D. in Sociology, University of Notre Dame; University of Texas at San Antonio). The ARDA is not responsible for content or typographical errors.
  • Atheists on the Santiago Way: Examining motivations to go on pilgrimage.
    Farias, Miguel, Thomas J. Coleman III, James E. Bartlett, Lluis Oviedo, Pedro Soares, Tiago Santos, and Maria del Carmen Bas (2019)
    Sociology of Religion 80:1: 28-44.

    Analyzes questionnaire data from Christian & atheist pilgrims on the Camino Santiago de Compostela. Motives of the 2 groups differ only on community (being with my community, doing something on behalf of another, helping sick people) & religious motives, which were both higher for the Christians.

    Associated Search Terms: Atheist; Pilgrimage
  • Unorganized atheism and the secular movement: Reddit as a site for studying "lived atheism."
    Lundmark, Evelina, and Stephen LeDrew (2019)
    Social Compass 66:1: 112-129.

    Discourse on an atheist online forum resembles those in formal atheist organizations.

    Associated Search Terms: Discourse; Internet; Atheist
  • Bringing up nones: Intergenerational influences and cohort trends.
    Bengtson, Vern L., R. David Hayward, Phil Zuckerman, and Merril Silverstein (2018)
    Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 57:2: 258-275.

    Analyzes 1970-2005 panel data from 3 generations in a California-based health plan. Socialization as humanists, atheists, & unintended socialization or religious rebels by religious parents explain part of the increase in religious "nones" between 1971 & 2005.

    Associated Search Terms: Family; Panel study; Socialization; Atheist, U.S.A.
  • Cross-national variation in the social origins and religious consequences of religious non-affiliation.
    Schwadel, Philip (2018)
    Social Science Research 70: 254-270.

    Associated Search Terms: Atheist
  • The inclusion of nonreligion in religion and human rights.
    Beaman, Lori G., Cory Steele, and Keelin Pringnitz (2018)
    Social Compass 65:1: 43-61.

    Explores tensions around the presence of "nones" in societies where there are displays of majoritarian religion.

    Associated Search Terms: Conflict; Minority; Atheist
  • Living without God in a religious country: Polish nonbelievers as a cultural minority.
    Tyrala, Radoslaw (2018)
    Social Compass 65:1: 131-144.

    Polish nonbelievers tend to be converts to nonbelief; they rarely encounter explicit prejudice but feel pressures to conform to some rituals.

    Associated Search Terms: Atheist, Poland; Minority; Poland
  • The rise of "no religion': Towards an explanation.
    Woodhead, Linda (2017)
    Sociology of Religion 78:3: 247-262.

    Descriptive data on atheists, mostly UK data. "No religion" has become the largest category in Great Britain.

    Associated Search Terms: Atheist, Great Britain
  • Christian fundamentalists or atheists: Who do progressive Christians like or hate more?
    Yancey, George (2017)
    Journal of Religion and Society 19 (online).

    Associated Search Terms: Prejudice, anti-fundamentalist; Prejudice, anti-atheist
  • Catholics and atheists: A cross-cultural qualitative analysis of religious identities among gay men.
    Izienicki, Hubert (2017)
    Sociology of Religion 78:3: 263-288.

    The monolithic Catholicism of Poland is hostile toward homosexual men & drives them into atheism or agnosticism. The pluralist situation of the USA allows them to retain their religious tradition.

    Associated Search Terms: Atheist, Poland; Catholic, Poland; United States, Illinois, Chicago; Poland, Warsaw; Catholic, U.S.A.; Homosexuality; Comparative; Pluralism
  • Looking beyond the church tax: Families and the disaffiliation of Austrian Roman Catholics.
    Berghammer, Caroline, Ulrike Zartler, and Desiree Krivanek (2017)
    Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 56:3:

    Uses mixed methods including 2008-12 panel data. The church tax was cited as responsible by disaffiliating believers, ideological reasons by agnostics & atheists. Family transitions were important for both groups.

    Associated Search Terms: Austria; Catholic, Austria; Disaffiliation; Family; Panel study; Atheist, Austria
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Data Archive
  • Google Ngrams Data, 1800-2000:
    Despite the importance of trend data for understanding key substantive and theoretical questions on American culture and religion, almost no such data exist. By searching the massive Google Books collection, however, the Google Ngram Viewer provides quantitative data on cultural and religious trends over time. The Ngram Viewer searches the entire collection of Google Books and reports on the number of times an Ngram is used annually in the books. Ngrams are most commonly words, but can be any given sequence of text. In an effort to democratize access to these trend data, the ARDA has created a dataset with more than 400 Ngram variables generated by the Ngram Viewer and more than 20 historical trend variables taken from the Historical Statistics of the United States and other sources. When available, we also included measures on education and clergy training.

    The Ngram variables included in this file were generated by using both specific terms and composite data, where scales are created out of similar words (e.g., Atheist scale = atheist + Atheist + atheism + Atheism). These Ngram data were drawn from Google's American English corpus, which contains more than 3 million books. The Ngram variables were calculated as rates and can be interpreted as how often "xyz" is used, as a proportion of the total words in Google's American English Corpus. We would caution, however, that the Ngram data included in this file are based on very simple searches. The Ngram Viewer also allows users to customize measures by using a wildcard search, inflection search, case insensitive search, part-of-speech tags and ngram compositions. For many research projects, users will want to refine the searches to better provide the measure desired. See the Finke and McClure working paper for more details.
    Funded By: The John Templeton Foundation
    Collected: 2015, Uploaded 6/29/2015
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Questions/Variables on Surveys
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