Say It Loud: I’m an Atheist, and I’m Proud
New research finds perceived discrimination may lead people to intensify their identity as atheists.
When people feel ostracized, they often respond by identifying even more strongly with the aspect of their lives that has provoked their rejection. Think of the black power crusade of the 1960s, or the gay pride movement of recent decades.
Newly published research finds this dynamic this also applies to another much-maligned minority: atheists.
"Like people who belong to other marginalized groups, perceptions of discrimination predict poor psychological and physical well-being among atheists," write psychologist Michael Doane and sociologist Marta Elliott of the University of Nevada-Reno. "One way that atheists may cope with such discrimination is by further believing that being an atheist is important and central to their identity."
Belief can certainly give one strength to persevere; so, it seems, can unbelief.
Writing in the journal Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, they describe a study featuring 960 self-identified atheists. They responded to a long list of statements designed to measure their experience with personal discrimination, group discrimination, and their personal identification with atheism, along with their self-esteem, physical health, and satisfaction with life.
This BBSNews article was syndicated from Home, and written by Shakak Manteq. Read the original article here.