This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Secularity in Great Britain
David Voas and Abby Day
here is probably no common understanding of the term “secular” among ordinary people, or even among scholars. Britain is formally a religious country in a way that many modern states are not, having (different) established churches in England and Scotland. There is also a willingness to countenance religious involvement in the machinery of government: the Church of England is represented by a number of its bishops in the upper house of Parliament, and in 2000 the Royal Commission on the Reform of the House of Lords even recommended that other religions should be represented as well, increasing the number of religious seats. The Labour government under Tony Blair did not accept the proposed extension of religious representation, but neither did it suggest eliminating the bishops. The links between church and state have very little impact on contemporary life, however. In some cases they seem to achieve the worst of both worlds, creating an impression that offends one side without benefiting the other. The law on blasphemy, for example, seems to Muslims to show that the English deck is stacked in Christianity’s favor, and yet the law is effectively a dead letter; it is almost inconceivable that a case could even be brought today, much less successfully prosecuted. Debates on the issue of establishment are often curious affairs, with some bishops wanting to “cut the connection”1 and some Muslims seeing the Church as a bulwark against secularism. In these circumstances the special privileges and duties of the national churches have no necessary bearing on Britain’s character as religious or secular. The term “secular” might for many people be associated with the mission of the National Secular Society, a lobby group for church-state separation, which is overtly atheistic rather than merely opposed to giving religion a public role. (For example, the society maintains that “supernaturalism is based upon ignorance
SeculariSm & Secularity
and assails it as the historic enemy of progress.”2) In common usage, though, a contrast is usually apparent between “secular” and “secularism.” “Secular” is the opposite of “religious,” and simply indicates an absence of religious motivation or content (e.g. secular ceremonies, morality, art, etc.). “Secularism” is an ideology that opposes religious privilege and frequently religion itself. Because the British are typically non-religious rather than antireligious, many people are secular but far fewer are secularists. Unlike Americans, Britons are accustomed to the idea of state-supported religious education, religious broadcasting on network television, bishops in the legislature, and so on. But unlike many continental Europeans, Britons do not tend to feel that they need protection from religious institutions. Indeed, the implicit assumption seems to be that a modest dose of religion is good for people—or at least other people. The notion that God’s function is to make children well-behaved, strangers helpful and shopkeepers honest means that outright secularism is less popular in Britain than one might suppose. But as individuals themselves, having little desire for divine supervision, are mostly secular, the benign acceptance of public religion does little apart from frustrate secularists and religious leaders impartially.
Social Scientific Approaches
It has become conventional to focus on three aspects of religious involvement: belonging, belief, and behavior. There are three distinct though overlapping ways of being secular: not belonging (not affiliating), not believing, and not practicing. None of these concepts is unambiguous. If the rather strict view is taken that religious people must accept specific articles of faith and know basic church doctrine, then only a fraction of the population qualify. But if accepting the existence of a higher power or an ultimate moral order counts as religious belief, the proportion is much more substantial. Similarly with religious practice, it makes a great deal of difference whether the focus is on regular attendance at services or if more occasional forms of practice with a strong social dimension (e.g., church weddings and baptisms or participation at Christmas, harvest festivals and the like) can be considered. Private prayer may provide more or less evidence of a religious disposition, depending on its form, content, and motivation. Although affiliation (belonging) is simply what Americans label “religious preference” rather than a measure of commitment, the growth in Britain in the number of those who say that they have no religion has ironically turned the simple willingness to accept a denominational label into an indicator of
8. Secularity in Great Britain
religiosity. Religion is still capable of being an aspect of personal identity that does not depend on active participation, official membership, or even agreement with basic doctrine. Precisely because of this subjectivity, though, selfidentification as having or not having a religion is sensitive to the wording and context of the inquiry. Beyond all of these definitional and methodological issues, one question stands out: how much does religion matter to people? Many believe in God, call themselves Anglican, and appear in church on occasion, but does that suffice for them to be usefully regarded as religious rather than secular? If religion makes little difference in their lives and does not seem important to them, or if they describe themselves as not very religious, then there is a case for classifying them as secular. The study of secularity thus raises a double problem: first to try to measure religious (non)adherence, and second to decide what the results might mean. At the end of the day, perhaps, identifying with a religion, believing in the supernatural, or attending religious services should not necessarily disqualify someone from being regarded as basically secular. The argument will be developed more fully later, but a few immediate remarks follow. To someone in a traditional society, coming from such-and-such village may be of the utmost importance, while for people in post-industrial society it may be more or less incidental where they were born or grew up. Likewise with religion: origins may mean a lot or a little. Most Britons are still able to specify their religious background, just as they can name their birthplace, father’s occupation, and secondary school. But whether these things make any difference to how they see themselves or the way they are perceived by others is not at all certain. Long after active religious participation has ceased, people may still want services for special occasions; after even that degree of interest has waned, they may still accept association with their religion of origin. The result is similar to a self-description as working class by the owner of a large business, or claims to Irishness by Americans who have a grandparent from Galway. Such personal identities may be personally meaningful, but the chances of passing them successfully to the next generation are slim. In any event, any characteristic tends to disappear from self-description as it loses its social significance. Being a Muslim currently seems sufficiently salient that very few British Muslims would not describe themselves as such; for relatively few Christians is the same true. With respect to belief, there is a strong inclination among sociologists to include transient supernatural experiences or opinions as “religion,” which is commonly held to include “the paranormal, fortune telling, fate and destiny, life after death, ghosts, spiritual experiences, luck and superstition.”3 Such
SeculariSm & Secularity
definitions broaden the concept to include formulations known as (inter alia) folk, common, invisible or implicit religion.4 Yet some people who describe themselves as Atheists often report seeing ghosts or similar phenomena.5 They do not link such experiences to anything religious or theistic but, rather, comment that science will one day explain them. Moreover, what people describe as fate, luck or destiny varies widely from pre-destination (“we can’t change fate”) to random events (“bad luck”) or selfdetermination (“I am master of my destiny”). Having a worldview that does not depend on supernatural powers is consistent with believing that rationally inexplicable things happen, when these episodes are viewed as incidental. The mere fact of holding some supernatural beliefs should not prevent someone from being classed as secular. Being secular is to have a non-theistic worldview; to accept the possibility of “something else out there” does not in itself make one religious, especially where such beliefs play no role and are accorded little importance in the person’s life. Finally, while it is unusual to find unreligious people in church, religious practice can occur even among the secular. Many parents in England hope—for reasons that are academic or social rather than religious—to have their children admitted to state-funded schools controlled by the Anglican or Catholic churches, and they attend church in order to pass the religious qualification. Others accompany religious parents or spouses, or (especially at cathedrals) go for the music. Private prayer is frequently practiced even by people who do not identify with a religion, attend services, or believe in a personal God;6 whether and to what extent such people are thereby shown to be “spiritual” rather than “secular” is debatable.
How Many People are Secular in Britain?
It might seem a simple matter to find out what proportion of people claim to have a religion. Unfortunately the answers vary considerably depending on how and in what context one asks the question. At one extreme, for example, the 2001 Census of Population shows 72 percent of people in England and Wales, and 65 percent of those in Scotland, categorized as Christian. On the census form for England and Wales religion follows the questions on country of birth and ethnicity, so that it appears to be a supplementary question on the same topic. The positive phraseology (“What is your religion?”) combined with tick-box options that simply list world religions (e.g., Christian/Muslim/Hindu) invite the respondent to specify a cultural background rather than a current affiliation. Note too that census forms are typically completed by the household head
8. Secularity in Great Britain
on behalf of all individuals at the address, and to the extent that such people tend to be older and more religious than average, the numbers may be higher than they would be on confidential individual questionnaires. The religion question used on the census form in Scotland preceded (rather than followed) those on ethnicity, and also offered answer categories for specific Christian denominations; perhaps as a result, people were nearly twice as likely as in England to give their affiliation as “none.” In contrast to the census, the question posed in the British Social Attitudes (BSA) survey occurs in the context of a wide-ranging inquiry into opinion and practice, and is worded in a way that might seem more likely to discourage than to encourage a positive response: “Do you regard yourself as belonging to any particular religion?” The respondent must interpret for him or herself what “belonging” might mean, but for most it probably implies some current as opposed to past affiliation. Indeed, the BSA questionnaire goes on to ask what religion (if any) one was brought up in, and the answers are strikingly different. While some 43 percent of people in 2004 said that they belonged to no religion, only 16 percent declared that they had been raised without one—though this figure has been increasing. A bare majority still present themselves as belonging to a Christian denomination. The importance of wording is strikingly apparent when the BSA results and those from Gallup Polls are compared. In the latter the question has a strong positive presumption, similar to that found in the recent census: “What is your religious denomination?” In consequence, the proportion of “nones” is less than half that found in BSA: 18 percent in Gallup vs. 39 percent in BSA. Fully a fifth of people apparently do not regard themselves as belonging to a particular religion, but if pushed to claim one will do so. Even nominal affiliation has different levels: in conjunction with the phenomenon of “believing without believing,” there are multiple ways of “belonging without belonging.” Relatively few people actually practice their supposed religion; there is much more notional than actual belonging.
Opinion polls in Britain show high levels of belief, but in all sorts of things, including reincarnation (a quarter of respondents), horoscopes (also a quarter), clairvoyance (almost half ), ghosts (nearly a third), and so on.7 It is far from clear that these beliefs make any difference to the people claiming them. Research suggests that casual believers, even in astrology, for example, which is distinguished by its practical orientation, rarely do or avoid doing things because of published advice.8 Studies on polling show that people are prepared to express
SeculariSm & Secularity
opinions about almost anything, whether or not they have any knowledge of or interest in the topic. Such “beliefs” may be uninformed, not deeply held, seldom acted upon, and relatively volatile. Feeling required to hold and even to express opinions is one thing; finding those issues important is another. While 25 percent of respondents may say that they believe in reincarnation, one is not inclined to feel that they thereby express any basic truths about their own identities. The corollary, though, is that it is difficult to be too impressed by the apparent number of conventional believers. The argument here is not that the large subpopulation that acknowledges the God of our fathers—the memorably styled “ordinary God”9—is shallow or insincere. The point is simply that it cannot be concluded from the fact that people tell pollsters they believe in God that they give the matter any thought, find it significant, will feel the same next year, or plan to do anything about it. In any event one can no longer infer from the widespread inclination to believe in a broadly defined God that people are basically Christian. Opinion polls over recent decades suggest (even given the previous caveats about interpreting survey evidence) that the characteristically Christian beliefs— particularly in Jesus as the Son of God—have been in decline, and are now held by a minority.10 Many Britons would like to be known as “spiritual” (the alternatives seem unattractive; who wants to be labelled a “materialist?”) and will therefore acknowledge a belief in something, but that something is less and less likely to be recognizable as religious doctrine. A useful supplementary approach (employed for example by Opinion Research Business in its Soul of Britain survey, or in the Scottish Social Attitudes survey module on religion in 2002) is to ask respondents to rate the personal importance of various activities they might have tried, from prayer to divination. Similar questions can be found on some national surveys; the British Household Panel Survey, for example, periodically asks ‘How much difference would you say religious beliefs make to your life?’ The responses are helpful in distinguishing between real commitment and mild interest or nominal allegiance.
Comprehensive surveys of church attendance in England and Scotland have been conducted by Christian Research, an organization that produces statistics on organized religion. Although the most recent results11 are still confidential pending publication, it is safe to say that at best 10 percent of the population goes to church with any regularity (e.g. monthly or more often). Even if we assume that half of all Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, Jews and other non-Christians (who collectively make up 5.4 percent of the population) are observant, only one
8. Secularity in Great Britain
eighth of people in Britain are religiously active. Other criteria are possible, as mentioned above. Religious ceremonies for rites of passage remain popular, though much less so than previously, and some special services draw large congregations. Christmas attracts two and a half times as many people to Anglican churches as appear on a normal Sunday. It seems very likely, though, that tradition and nostalgia rather than sporadic religious enthusiasm are largely responsible for high turnout at such times It is well known that people tend to exaggerate the frequency of their attendance at religious services when responding to surveys,12 a tendency that varies with age.13 Asking whether the individual attended within the last seven days (the question normally used in American Gallup polls) has produced values even in Britain that are more than twice as high as observed weekly attendance.14 If being a churchgoer is part of one’s personal identity, there may be considerable resistance to answering in a way that places one outside the fold. Clearly subjective feelings of regularity are being translated into unrealistic frequencies; it is not unreasonable, however, to label those who say that they attend monthly or more often as religious, even if in self-description rather than in practice. Fully 18 percent of respondents to the British Social Attitudes survey in 2004 claimed to attend services at least monthly—a figure we know to be half again as large as the true value.
Estimating the Religious/Secular Composition of the Country
The European Social Survey provides good data on the three main areas of religious affiliation, practice and belief, as follows; the actual questions are provided in the Appendix: Belonging (Affiliation) Belief Behavior (Practice) current or past identification self-rated religiosity importance of religion attendance at religious services prayer participation/support
(While these last two questions on how religious the respondent is and how important religion is to him/her do not measure beliefs directly, it seems likely that there is a strong association between these variables and strength of religious belief.) As an initial attempt to produce a typology to describe the religious composition of Great Britain, one could define three categories: the actively
SeculariSm & Secularity
religious, the privately religious, and the unreligious. For example, someone may be categorized as actively religious if he/she claims to attend services at least monthly and rates him/herself as 6 or higher on a scale from 0 (not at all religious) to 10 (very religious). The “privately religious” attend services rarely or never, but they both rate themselves as more religious than not (6+ on the scale) and also describe religion as more important than unimportant in their lives (6+ on the scale). A rather strict definition of being unreligious would require the respondent to satisfy all of the following: • attends only at major holidays, less often, or never • prays only at major holidays, less often, or never • rates self as 0, 1 or 2 on a scale from 0 (not at all religious) to 10 (very religious) • describes the importance of religion in his/her life as 0, 1 or 2 on a scale from 0 (extremely unimportant) to 10 (extremely important) These three categories still only account for half the population, as seen in Figure 8-1). A key question, therefore, is what characterises the other half of the population. What do they believe, when do they go to church, and how do they describe themselves? Are they somewhat religious or basically secular? In 1998, about a quarter of British respondents answered a question on the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP) religion module with either “I don’t believe in God” or “I don’t know whether there is a God and I don’t believe there is any way to find out.” Not quite a quarter said ‘I know God really exists and I have no doubts about it’. As the sample was only 800 the results should be treated with caution. Nevertheless, these figures do correspond to the distribution suggested here (a quarter religious, a quarter unreligious). It seems reasonable to suppose that most of the “middle 50 percent” identified here will fall into one or another of the remaining ISSP categories for belief: • I don't believe in a personal God, but I do believe in a Higher Power of some kind • I find myself believing in God some of the time, but not at others • While I have doubts, I feel that I do believe in God As for religious practice, few of these people attend church services except for weddings, funerals, and possibly on special occasions such as Christmas. Many (40 percent) never pray, but a quarter do so weekly or even daily.
8. Secularity in Great Britain
Religious Composition of Great Britain
(Categories based on ESS data)
Finally, about half identify with a religious group and half do not. Of those who do not, two thirds have a religious background, generally in a mainline Anglican/Protestant church. In terms of general orientation, these respondents are by definition neither particularly religious nor unreligious. Nearly three-quarters place themselves at points 3, 4 or 5 on the 0-10 scale from “not at all religious” to “very religious.” What is more striking, however, is how little religion seems to matter in their lives. Nearly a third rate religion as unimportant (placing it at 0, 1 or 2 on the 010 scale from extremely unimportant to extremely important), with another 30 percent rating it at 3 or 4 and 27 percent giving it a 5 (moderately unimportant). Only 10 percent, in other words, think that religion is personally even somewhat important rather than unimportant. The dominant British attitude towards religion, then, is not one of rejection or hostility. Many of those in the large middle group who are neither religious nor unreligious are willing to identify with a religion, are open to the existence of God or a higher power, may use the church for rites of passage, and might pray at least occasionally. What seems apparent, though, is that religion plays a very minor role (if any) in their lives. Those who fall in the “middle 50 percent” may simply be at intermediate (and possibly confused) stages between religion and irreligion. Perhaps, though, characteristics on separate dimensions distinguish them from the others. A
SeculariSm & Secularity
possible typology is shown in Figure 8-2; in the absence of good quantitative data the frequency distribution can only be guessed at. The following description of the ‘nominalist’ categories is paraphrased from Day.15 Natal nominalists ascribe their Christianity (it is rarely anything else) to familial heritage alone. Typically they were baptized and attended church when they were young. They are unsure whether God exists, but if he does he does not play a part in their lives. They do not refer to any religion or deity in answer to questions about what they believe in, what is important to them, what guides them morally, what makes them happy or sad, their purpose in life, or what happens after they die. Christian natal nominalists admit that they rarely, if ever, think about their religious identity. They assume religious identity is something one acquires through birth or early upbringing. Ethnic nominalists describe themselves as Christian (or Hindu, Muslim, etc.) to position themselves as different from others. Like natal nominalists, Christian ethnic nominalists are not convinced about God, do not engage in religious practice, and do not give the matter much thought. They differ in describing themselves as Christian as a way of identifying with a people or culture. They see themselves as belonging to a distinct group, which may be national (e.g. English as distinct from Welsh) rather than necessarily racial. In doing so they clearly aim to separate themselves from other groups (in particular Muslims?) that are identified with a different faith. Aspirational nominalists describe themselves as Christian, and perhaps more specifically as part of the established church, because they want to belong to this group. It represents something to which they aspire. The emphasis on membership in a group is shared with ethnic nominalists, but the identity carries for them an additional notion of middle-class respectability and confidence. In their view the label is attached not simply to people like themselves but to people like they want to be. Whereas these three “nominalist” categories have been defined largely by reference to self-identification, the remaining two classes relate more closely to belief. They include people who entertain beliefs about their fate, the afterlife, a higher power, etc., that are quasi-religious but inconsistent with the teachings of particular organized religions. Those in the “popular heterodox” group may combine elements of astrology, reincarnation, divination, magic, folk religion and conventional Christianity. They are not especially reflective about their worldviews, which in consequence may be incoherent. The salience of these beliefs tends to be rather low. By contrast the “Sheilaists” are more conscious of spiritual seeking. “Sheilaism” was the self-applied label used by a respondent (“Sheila Larson,” a
8. Secularity in Great Britain
Religious Typology for Great Britain
ConventionAlly religioUs UnConventionAlly religioUs/sPiritUAl nominAl Adherents Actively religious Privately religious Sheilaism Popular heterodoxy Natal nominalists Ethnic nominalists Aspirational nominalists Agnostics Atheists
young nurse) in Habits of the Heart 16: “I believe in God,” Sheila says. “I am not a religious fanatic. I can’t remember the last time I went to church. My faith has carried me a long way. It’s Sheilaism. Just my own little voice.” Although the numbers active in what has been termed the ‘holistic milieu’17 are quite small, a more substantial proportion of the population will privately follow a variety of self-spirituality. Exactly where one should draw the line distinguishing the secular from the rest is unclear. Many nominal adherents are failed Agnostics: they used to have doubts, and now they just don’t care. Arguably, most are secular for all practical purposes. If they are included, then at least half the British population could reasonably be regarded as secular.
How Are Secular People Different from Others?
Socio-Demographic and Economic Characteristics
There is enormous variation by age in religious identification. Among people aged 65 and over surveyed for the British Social Attitudes (BSA) survey in 2004, only 22 percent say that they regard themselves as belonging to no religion, while 63 percent of young adults (18-24) so describe themselves. These differences might be influenced by life stage (if older people are more religious than young ones), but the evidence suggests that in the main they are generational (produced by a steady decline in religiosity over time18). Although the ethno-religious minority population is growing more rapidly than the rest, their numbers are too small to prevent the arrival of a clear secular majority in the next decade or so.
SeculariSm & Secularity
Figure 8-3 shows the percentage of adult men and women classified as having no religion on the 2001 census of England and Wales. Although these figures may underestimate the actual size of the secular population, they do give a good indication of the generational trend. As is evident, gender is also associated with secularity. Exactly half of white men say that they have no religion (in the BSA 2004), versus 41 percent of white women. To put it another way, men make up 58 percent of the secular category as defined using European Social Survey data, but only 36 percent of the religious groups. Only 17 percent of religious people are not married, widowed, separated or divorced; by contrast, nearly 40 percent of the secular are never-married. Most but not all of this effect is explained by age; among those born before 1970, 17 percent of the secular and only 8 percent of the religious are never-married. Likewise, only 15 percent of the religious born before 1970 say that they have ever lived with a partner without being married, while 38 percent of the secular have done so. Both the religious and the secular are better educated, on average, than those who are neither. (About 30 percent have been in higher education, as against less than 20 percent for the others.) High levels of education often produce skepticism about religion and the self-confidence to be overtly Agnostic or Atheist, but higher education is also associated with middle-class values, civic participation, suburban living and other characteristics conducive to churchgoing. The census shows a clear distinction between the “Nones” and “Christians” (among people aged 25-49, for example, 32 percent and 23 percent respectively have high qualifications), but the latter group includes nominal as well as religious Christians. Conversely, 23 percent of religiously active BSA respondents have degrees, as against only 18 percent for religiously unaffiliated non-attenders, but this “secular” group (which includes 41 percent of the population) is much more loosely defined than with the ESS or census criteria. Actively religious respondents to the BSA are more likely to be in intermediate, managerial or professional occupations than unaffiliated non-attenders (55 vs. 42 percent). Using 2001 census data for England and Wales, however, there is a tendency for those responding “none” to the question “what is your religion?” to be in the higher occupational categories. Among men (omitting those not classified) 51 percent of the Nones were in intermediate, managerial or professional occupations, as compared with 44 percent of (nominal) Christians. These findings are consistent with the suggestion that many of those describing themselves as Christian on the census were working class whites who viewed the term as an ethno-national rather than a religious label.19 As with education, it
8. Secularity in Great Britain
No Religion by Age and Sex (England and Wales, 2001 Census)
30 25 No Religion (%) 20 15 10 5 0
45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 85
Men Men Women
0 25 30 35 40
is apparent that the better-off are over-represented among both the genuinely religious and the overtly secular.
Social and Political Attitudes
Using the categories already defined with European Social Survey data it is possible to examine the social and political views of the secular and religious subpopulations. The secular are somewhat more likely to appear on the left of a left-right scale (30 percent left vs. 26 percent right), with the opposite true of religious people (25 percent left vs. 31 percent right). The secular are somewhat more likely to say that they never discuss politics, however (25 percent vs. 18 percent among the religious). A similar picture comes from looking at the derived left-right scale variable in the BSA 2004; here the mean value (on a scale from 1 to 5) is 2.7 for those who have no religion and rarely or never attend services, as opposed to 2.9 for people who identify with a denomination and are regular attenders. Again, only 26 percent of the secular (vs. 37 percent of the religious) say that they have “quite a lot” or “a great deal” of interest in politics. These results hold up even when controlling for age. On a libertarian-authoritarian scale derived for the BSA, religiously active respondents are somewhat more authoritarian than unaffiliated non-attenders, but the difference largely disappears once one controls for age. Both of these groups are more libertarian than the in-between category, which probably relates to the educational and class distributions mentioned above.
SeculariSm & Secularity
Unsurprisingly nearly two thirds of religious people describe the view that “it is important to follow traditions and customs” as “like me” or even “very much like me;” not even a quarter of the secular do the same. More unexpectedly, hedonistic values are not claimed solely by the secular: 46 percent identify with the statement that “it is important to seek fun and the things that give pleasure,” but 36 percent of the religious do so as well. The gap is modest, but perhaps the secular have some catching up to do; in answer to the question “how happy are you?,” 39 percent of religious people but only 29 percent of the secular placed themselves at 9 or 10 on a scale from 0 to 10. (A similar finding has been reported from the U.S. General Social Survey.)20 The association is partly explained by a remarkably strong age effect, however: 45 percent of people born before the end of the Second World War say that they are extremely happy (9 or 10 on the scale), against only 28 percent of those born since 1945.
So, are secular and religious people in Great Britain different? Yes and no. The age contrasts are significant, with younger, more secular generations gradually replacing the older and more religious. At the same time, people who are consciously and consistently religious or unreligious tend to be better educated and in higher occupational categories than those in the muddled middle. Sociologists of religion have tended to concentrate on the core religious constituency, and this volume is a welcome opportunity to examine the opposite pole. Ultimately, the challenge lies in understanding the group in between. When it comes to religion, the British have been “puzzled people” for decades.21 Their secularity, like their religiosity, is casual and unconcerned. Britain may illustrate how the secular triumphs: by default.
1. 2. 3. 4. Buchanan, Colin, Cut the Connection: Disestablishment and the Church of England (London: Darton, Longman and Todd, 1994). See http://www.secularism.org.uk/generalprinciples.html. Davie, Grace, Religion in Britain since 1945: Believing without Belonging (Oxford: Blackwell, 1994) 83. Bailey, Edward, ‘Implicit religion: A bibliographical introduction’, Social Compass, 37(4): 499-509; Davie, Grace, Religion in Britain since 1945: Believing without Belonging (Oxford: Blackwell, 1994); Luckmann, Thomas, The Invisible Religion (London: Collier-Macmillan, 1967).
8. Secularity in Great Britain
Day, Abby. (2006) Believing in Belonging in Contemporary Britain: A case study from Yorkshire, unpublished PhD thesis, Lancaster University. Bänziger, Sarah. ‘Praying in Dutch society: The socialization versus individualism hypotheses’, paper presented at the annual conference of the BSA Sociology of Religion Study Group, Manchester, 4 April 2006. Gill, Robin, C. Kirk Hadaway, and Penny Long Marler. ‘Is religious belief declining in Britain?’ Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 37(3): 507-16. Spencer, Wayne. ‘Are the stars coming out? Secularization and the Future of Astrology in the West,’ Predicting Religion: Christian, Secular and Alternative Futures. ed. Grace Davie, Paul Heelas, and Linda Woodhead, (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2003). Davie.
10. Gill et al.; see also The Tablet, 18 December 1999: 1729 11. Brierley, Peter, Pulling Out of the Nose Dive: A Contemporary Picture of Churchgoing, (London: Christian Research, 2006). 12. C. Kirk Hadaway, Penny Long Marler, and Mark Chaves, ‘What the polls don’t show: A closer look at US church attendance’, American Sociological Review, 58: 741-52. 13. C. Kirk Hadaway and Penny Long Marler, ‘How many Americans attend worship each week? An alternative approach to measurement’, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 44 (3): 307-322. 14. C. Kirk Hadaway and Penny Long Marler, ‘Did you really go to church this week?’, The Christian Century, 6 May 1998, pp. 472-5. 15. Day. 16. Bellah, Robert, Richard Madsen, William M. Sullivan, Ann Swidler, Steven M. Tipton. Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1985). 17. Heelas, Paul, Linda Woodhead, Benjamin Seel, Bronislaw Szerszynski, and Karin Tusting. The Spiritual Revolution: Why Religion is Giving Way to Spirituality. (Oxford: Blackwell, 2005). 18. see David Voas and Alasdair Crockett, ‘Religion in Britain: Neither believing nor belonging’, Sociology 39(1): 11-28; Alasdair Crockett and David Voas, ‘Generations of decline: Religious change in twentieth-century Britain’, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 45(4). 19. David Voas and Steve Bruce, ‘The 2001 census and Christian identification in Britain’, Journal of Contemporary Religion 19(1): 23-8; Day. 20. see David G. Hope, ‘The funds, friends, and faith of happy people’, American Psychologist, 55(1): 56-67. 21. Mass Observation, Puzzled People: A Study in Popular Attitudes to Religion, Ethics, Progress & Politics in a London Borough (London: Gollancz, 1948).
SeculariSm & Secularity
AppEndix: EuropEAn sociAl survEy 2002 QuEstions on rEligion
• Do you consider yourself as belonging to any particular religion or denomination? [Footnote: Identification is meant, not official membership.] Yes/No (if yes, which; if no…) • Have you ever considered yourself as belonging to any particular religion or denomination? Yes/No (if yes, which) • Regardless of whether you belong to a particular religion, how religious would you say you are? (0 = Not at all religious . . . 10 = Very religious) • Apart from special occasions such as weddings and funerals, about how often do you attend religious services nowadays? 1. Every day 2. More than once a week 3. Once a week 4. At least once a month 5. Only on special holy days 6. Less often 7. Never • Apart from when you are at religious services, how often, if at all, do you pray? 1. Every day 2. More than once a week 3. Once a week 4. At least once a month 5. Only on special holy days 6. Less often 7. Never • Looking at this card, how important is each of these things in your life. (0 = Extremely unimportant . . . 10 = Extremely important) 1. religion? [Other items are family, friends, leisure time, politics, work, voluntary organizations] • For each of the voluntary organizations I will now mention, please use this card to tell me whether any of these things apply to you now or in the last 12 months, and, if so, which. —a religious or church organization? • None • Member • Participated • Donated money • Voluntary work [If the response is other than ‘none’, ask…] • Do you have personal friends within this organization? Yes/No [Other organizations—in a list of 12—include sports clubs, trade unions, etc.]