society without god what the least religious nations can tell us about contentment

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Society Without God

Author : Phil Zuckerman
ISBN : 9780814797235
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 46. 40 MB
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Are lawyers, by their very nature, agents of the state, of capital, of institutions of power? Or are there ways in which they can work constructively or transformatively for the disempowered, the working class, the underprivileged? Lawyers in a Postmodern World explores how lawyers actively create the forms of power which they and others deploy. Through engaging case studies, the book examines how lawyers work within and for powerful institutions and provides suggestions--both general and practical--for ways in which the practice of law can be made to work with and for the powerless. Individuals chapters address such subjects as the contradictions of radical law practice; legal work in South Africa; the economics and politics of negotiating justice; feminist legal scholarship and women's gendered lives; the overlapping worlds of law, business, and politics; theories of legal practice; and how lawyers are constitutive of gender relations. Contributing to the book are Maureen Cain (University of West Indies), Yves Dezalay (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France), Martha Fineman (Columbia University), Sue Lees (University of North London), Doreen McBarnet (Wolfson College, Oxford), Frank Munger (SUNY, Buffalo), Wilfried Scharf (University of Cape Town), Stuart Scheingold (University of Washington), David Sugarman (Lancaster University), and Sally Wheeler (University of Nottingham).

Is Reality Secular

Author : Mary Poplin
ISBN : 9780830871896
Genre : Religion
File Size : 65. 58 MB
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What is the nature of reality? At the root of our society's deepest political and cultural divisions are the conflicting principles of four global worldviews. While each of us holds to some version of one of these worldviews, we are often unconscious of their differences as well as their underlying assumptions. Mary Poplin argues that the ultimate test of a worldview, philosophy or ideology is whether it corresponds with reality. Since different perspectives conflict with each other, how do we make sense of the differences? And if a worldview system accurately reflects reality, what implications does that have for our thinking and living? In this wide-ranging and perceptive study, Poplin examines four major worldviews: naturalism, humanism, pantheism and Judeo-Christian theism. She explores the fundamental assumptions of each, pressing for limitations. Ultimately she puts each perspective to the test, asking, what if this worldview is true? If reality is secular, that means something for how we orient our lives. But if reality is not best explained by secular perspectives, that would mean something quite different. Consider for yourself what is the fundamental substance of reality.

Homo Religiosus

Author : Timothy Samuel Shah
ISBN : 9781108397186
Genre : Religion
File Size : 66. 86 MB
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Are humans naturally predisposed to religion and supernatural beliefs? If so, does this naturalness provide a moral foundation for religious freedom? This volume offers a cross-disciplinary approach to these questions, engaging in a range of contemporary debates at the intersection of religion, cognitive science, sociology, anthropology, political science, epistemology, and moral philosophy. The contributors to this original and important volume present individual, sometimes opposing points of view on the naturalness of religion thesis and its implications for religious freedom. Topics include the epistemological foundations of religion, the relationship between religion and health, and a discussion of the philosophical foundations of religious freedom as a natural, universal right, drawing implications for the normative role of religion in public life. By challenging dominant intellectual paradigms, such as the secularization thesis and the Enlightenment view of religion, the volume opens the door to a powerful and provocative reconceptualization of religious freedom.

The Sacred Project Of American Sociology

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 9780199377152
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 62. 57 MB
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Counter to popular perceptions, contemporary American sociology is and promotes a profoundly sacred project at heart. Sociology today is in fact animated by sacred impulses, driven by sacred commitments, and serves a sacred project. Sociology appears on the surface to be a secular, scientific enterprise--its founding fathers were mostly atheists. Its basic operating premises are secular and naturalistic. Sociologists today are disproportionately not religious, compared to all Americans, and often irreligious. The Sacred Project of American Sociology shows, counter-intuitively, that the secular enterprise that everyday sociology appears to be pursuing is actually not what is really going on at sociology's deepest level. Christian Smith conducts a self-reflexive, tables-turning, cultural and institutional sociology of the profession of American sociology itself, showing that this allegedly secular discipline ironically expresses Emile Durkheim's inescapable sacred, exemplifies its own versions of Marxist false consciousness, and generates a spirited reaction against Max Weber's melancholically observed disenchantment of the world. American sociology does not escape the analytical net that it casts over the rest of the ordinary world. Sociology itself is a part of that very human, very social, often very sacred and spiritual world. And sociology's ironic mis-recognition of its own sacred project leads to a variety of arguably self-destructive and distorting tendencies. This book re-asserts a vision for what sociology is most important for, in contrast with its current commitments, and calls sociologists back to a more honest, fair, and healthy vision of its purpose.

The Oxford Handbook Of Atheism

Author : Stephen Bullivant
ISBN : 9780191667404
Genre : Religion
File Size : 88. 13 MB
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Recent books by, among others, Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens have thrust atheism firmly into the popular, media, and academic spotlight. This so-called New Atheism is arguably the most striking development in western socio-religious culture of the past decade or more. As such, it has spurred fertile (and often heated) discussions both within, and between, a diverse range of disciplines. Yet atheism, and the New Atheism, are by no means co-extensive. Interesting though it indeed is, the New Atheism is a single, historically and culturally specific manifestation of positive atheism (the that there is/are no God/s), which is itself but one form of a far deeper, broader, and more significant global phenomenon. The Oxford Handbook of Atheism is a pioneering edited volume, exploring atheism—understood in the broad sense of 'an absence of belief in the existence of a God or gods'—in all the richness and diversity of its historical and contemporary expressions. Bringing together an international team of established and emerging scholars, it probes the varied manifestations and implications of unbelief from an array of disciplinary perspectives (philosophy, history, sociology, anthropology, demography, psychology, natural sciences, gender and sexuality studies, literary criticism, film studies, musicology) and in a range of global contexts (Western Europe, North America, post-communist Europe, the Islamic world, Japan, India). Both surveying and synthesizing previous work, and presenting the major fruits of innovative recent research, the handbook is set to be a landmark text for the study of atheism.

Faith No More

Author : Phil Zuckerman
ISBN : 9780199912353
Genre : Religion
File Size : 36. 65 MB
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During his 2009 inaugural speech, President Obama described the United States as a nation of "Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus--and nonbelievers." It was the first time an American president had acknowledged the existence of this rapidly growing segment of the population in such a public forum. And yet the reasons why more and more people are turning away from religion are still poorly understood. In Faith No More, Phil Zuckerman draws on in-depth interviews with people who have left religion to find out what's really behind the process of losing one's faith. According to a 2008 study, so many Americans claim no religion (15%, up from 8% in 1990) that this category now outranks every other religious group except Catholics and Baptists. Exploring the deeper stories within such survey data, Zuckerman shows that leaving one's faith is a highly personal, complex, and drawn-out process. And he finds that, rather than the clich? of the angry, nihilistic atheist, apostates are life-affirming, courageous, highly intelligent and inquisitive, and deeply moral. Zuckerman predicts that this trend toward nonbelief will likely continue and argues that the sooner we recognize that religion is frequently and freely rejected by all sorts of men and women, the sooner our understanding of the human condition will improve. The first book of its kind, Faith No More will appeal to anyone interested in the "New Atheism" and indeed to anyone wishing to more fully understand our changing relationship to religious faith.

Beyond Belief

Author : Philip Stewart
ISBN : 9781499073225
Genre : Religion
File Size : 79. 59 MB
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How and why does faith so often fade away? Where does it go, and what do you hold on to when it is gone? Between the believer and the unbeliever lies a sort of communicational void—a cultural gap—usually marked by silence or, alternatively, by rage. This extended essay draws on history, literature, and theology as well as personal experience in an attempt to give some kind of account of the demise of belief in terms that a believer can perhaps understand and, in the process, to cover some of the principal reasons why the arguments usually put forward to buttress faith prove to be without force. In the end, faith can enrich a person’s life only at the expense of the illusions on which it is based.

Free Inquiry

Author :
ISBN : STANFORD:36105132679262
Genre : Secularism
File Size : 70. 86 MB
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Scandinavian Review

Author :
ISBN : STANFORD:36105213161396
Genre : Scandinavians
File Size : 62. 46 MB
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Cultural Semantics And Social Cognition

Author : Carsten Levisen
ISBN : UCBK:C106605370
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 36. 14 MB
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"Presenting original, detailed studies of keywords of Danish, this book breaks new ground for the study of language and cultural values. Based on evidence from the semantic categories of everyday language, such as the Danish concept of hygge (roughly meaning, 'pleasant togetherness'), the book provides an integrative socio-cognitive framework for studying and understanding language-particular universes. It is argued that the worlds we live in are not linguistically and conceptually neutral, but rather that speakers who live by Danish concepts are likely to pay attention to their world in ways suggested by central Danish keywords and lexical grids. By means of a sophisticated semantic methodology, the author accounts for the meanings of even highly culture-specific and untranslatable linguistic concepts. The book offers new tools for comparative research into the diversity of semantic and cultural systems in contemporary Europe. Additionally, it contributes to the emerging discipline of cultural semantics, and to the ongoing debates of linguistic diversity, metalanguage, and the use of linguistic evidence in studies of culture and social cognition."--Publisher description.

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