Reaching for a new sense of connection? The diversity of unbelief in Northern and Central Europe : an early analysis

Herbert, David and Bullock, Josh (2018) Reaching for a new sense of connection? The diversity of unbelief in Northern and Central Europe : an early analysis. In: Borders and boundaries : 'Religion' on the periphery; 03 – 05 Sep 2018, Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Unpublished)

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Surveys shows that unbelievers have a distinctive profile compared to the general population on several indicators related to sociality, collective identity and cultural transmission. For example, they tend to rank family as less important, to identify less with people for whom tradition is important, and to be less willing to fight for their country; but more likely to rate friendship as very important. This evidence suggests a distinctive, less (or differently) embedded, sociality, and lower social conformity, compared to believers. This paper presents early analysis from our Templeton funded Understanding Unbelief project. Reaching for a New Sense of Connection contributes to mapping the diversity of unbelief in Northern and Central Europe by using survey, social media and interview data across six countries (UK, Netherlands, Germany, Poland, Norway, and Romania). These countries offer diverse (non-) religious backgrounds including post-Communist societies, (eastern Germany, Poland, Romania), environments with strong pressures to religious conformity, (both in the majority culture and minority subcultures); in strong welfare state environments and in less secure contexts; in mixed Christian heritage environments, and with different majority religious heritages (Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox). The sample includes environments which have experienced rapid (Netherlands) and gradual (UK) secularization, in cosmopolitan and parochial environments (big cities and small towns), and in environments that have high and low levels of unbelief.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Event Title: Borders and boundaries : 'Religion' on the periphery
Organising Body: British Association for the Study of Religions, Irish Society for the Academic Study of Religions
Research Area: Sociology
Faculty, School or Research Centre: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > School of Law, Social and Behavioural Sciences
Depositing User: Josh Bullock
Date Deposited: 15 Jun 2020 13:07
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2020 10:02

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