HOW THE WEST REALLY LOST GOD di Mary Eberstadt - cap 5
5 Circumstantial Evidence for the “Family Factor,” Part Three: Because the “Family Factor” Explains Problems That Existing Theories of Secularization Do Not Explain—Including What Is Known as “American Exceptionalism”
- by introducing the Family Factor, we can shed new light on the largest problem that has bedeviled the theory all along: i.e., the difference in religiosity between two of the most advanced areas on earth, Western Europe on one hand and the United States on the other.
- Per dawkins gli usa sono l"eccezione... Rodney Stark has argued? Is it instead Europe that is the exception
- Paradosso adequately “explained” by the difference between today’s American and Western European tendencies toward family formation—meaning that there are more families following the traditional model in America, even today, than in Europe. There are more marriages in the United States, even today, and more children per woman—both of which seem reasonable proxies for the relative strength of the natural family.
- Murray summarizes, “American marriages were different from European ones (or so both Americans and foreign observers seemed to agree) in the solemnity of the marital bond
- The Family Factor also helps to solve another puzzle about religiosity that has yet to be satisfactorily explained: the male/female religious gender gap.
- From yesteryear’s caricature of the “Church Lady” on the television series Saturday Night Live to the realities of running bingo games, school fund-raisers, and soup kitchens out of church basements, the stereotype holds true: it is women, and not men, who are the everyday backbone of the Christian churches
- Putnam. “Women believe more fervently in God. They aver that religion is more important in their daily lives, they pray more often, they read scripture more often and interpret it more literally, they talk about religion more often—in short, by virtually every measure they are more religious
- It is less than persuasive to argue, for example, that women are more prone to belief because they are mentally inferior
- L'avversione al rischio è donna. Pochi figli potenziali.
- Pippa Norris and Ronald Inglehart, whose book cited earlier, Sacred and Secular, is a meticulous attempt to revise the secularization thesis to take account of what they call “existential security.” According to their model, the poorer and less secure people are, the more they “need” religion...
- Raphaël Franck and Laurence R. Iannaccone, cited earlier, maintain that the Western welfare state has eroded religiosity “because churches offered welfare services which were not provided by the State.”14 More welfare, as their data show, means less God. Insofar as the welfare state usurps the family’s historical tasks of seeing to the well-being of its members, their explanation of how the West lost God is consistent with this theory.
- The Family Factor helps to explain something that comes up repeatedly in the scholarly literature, which is the mystery of why 1960 or thereabouts is such a pivotal year in secularization.
- Two particularly useful books examining that phenomenon are Hugh McLeod’s The Religious Crisis of the 1960s and Callum G. Brown’s The Death of Christian Britain
- As early as 1973, for example, in a book called Sexual Suicide that was often called provocative at the time, George Gilder argued that the sexual revolution was driving men away from women and families
- In another prescient book published in 1999 called The Decline of Males, secular sociologist Lionel Tiger argued similarly that in giving women complete control over reproduction, the Pill essentially rendered men obsolete.23 The result, he observed, was that men existed in an ever-more attenuated relationship to women
- Sociologist Robert Wuthnow of Princeton has laid out the connection between the Pill and the decline in traditional religiosity in his 1998 book After Heaven: Spirituality in America Since the 1950s
- the time between confirmation and parenthood has always been one in which young people could drop out of established religion and turn their attention to other things, the doubling of this period was of enormous religious significance
- More Pill equals less time in a family. More time in a family equals more time in church. Therefore more Pill equals less God