India Uncut

This blog has moved to its own domain. Please visit for the all-new India Uncut and bookmark it. The new site has much more content and some new sections, and you can read about them here and here. You can subscribe to full RSS feeds of all the sections from here. This blogspot site will no longer be updated, except in case of emergencies, if the main site suffers a prolonged outage. Thanks - Amit.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

The view outside the liberal enclaves

In response to this, which was a response to this, Suresh Venkatasubramanian of The Geomblog writes in:
[T]here have been recent reports of the Air Force academy enforcing a 'de facto religion': evangelical christianity, on its cadets, with cadets of other faiths feeling discriminated against.

Religion is a far stronger presence in the US than it may appear in 'liberal enclaves'.
Well, we've never heard of corresponding pressures in the NDA, have we? I used to think that as societies grow more and more prosperous and advanced, the hold of religion decreases. But clearly it isn't quite as simple as that.

Update: Moments after I put up this post, Suresh wrote in again:
[I] went back and re-read the article and your post. Now that I think about it, I really strongly disagree with the sense that religion is not a big deal in the US. It is in fact a huge deal, and in many ways has always been this way. Richard Hofstadter's book "Anti-Intellectualism in American Life" is a tour de force that links the vibrant evangelical community that developed in the US very quickly after colonization with anti-intellectual forces that stood opposed to the 'high church' of the north-eastern protestant groups.

Today's brouhahas over evolution and the like are mere windows onto this ferment: now with a supreme court spot open and abortion in peril, you'll see even more of it.
amit varma, 12:11 PM| write to me | permalink | homepage

I recommend: