Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Culture of Disbelief” as Want to Read:
The Culture of Disbelief
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Culture of Disbelief

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  165 ratings  ·  16 reviews
The Culture Of Disbelief hasbeen the subject of an enormous amount of mediaattention from the first moment it was published.Hugely successful in hardcover, the Anchor paperbackis sure to find a large audience as theever-increasing, enduring debate about the relationship ofchurch and state in America continues. In TheCulture Of Disbelief, Stephen Carterexplains how we can p ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published September 1st 1994 by Anchor (first published 1993)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Culture of Disbelief, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Culture of Disbelief

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 444)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Gary Miller
Carter is an Episcopalian, who once clerked for Thurgood Marshall. He is also a law professor at Yale. He writes like an attorney. Some of his sentences seem to be several pages long (not really, just seems like it). There were times when I wished he had provided an English translation from his legalize. He specializes in church/state issues.

The basic idea of the book is though the government should not be involved in religion, religious people have a constitutional right and a moral obligation
S. Carter doesn't hold the same views on his faith that I do. He did explain very well how the law tends to view religion as sometimes a hobby. The law isn't consistent. It was informative, but a little outdated being written in 1992. He did point out several times that Reagan didn't go to church and Bush used the Christian right rather than being a part of it. He said both did very little to help.
A thoughtful look at the poo-pooing of religion by secular American society

I found The Culture of Disbelief: How American Law and Politics Trivialize Religion while reading another book by Stephen L. Carter, one that I did not care for, Jericho's Fall . However, I am glad I read Jericho's Fall because I found this book listed on a page of the author's other works.

Read the discussion boards on popular blogs, newspaper pages and any other site that attracts people from all walks of life and
Sheldon Lehman
Considering this book is a little dated ('93) many of the author's points are still an issue today, like the discussion of school vouchers. After the first 8 chapters, where there is much discussion of the courts, the book decays into more of a philosophical discussion. I don't agree with his stance on everything (WARNING!! Even though he calls himself a Christian (Episcopal), he does not believe in the errancy of Scripture or the Biblical account of creation - this is discussed in a chapter on ...more
Jun 03, 2008 Susie rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone!!!
Very good insights about the way that religion is treated in the public sphere of America currently. Cogent arguments for reevaluating the way in which religious voices are considered and the foundations of religious beliefs treated. The author defends the reasonableness even of religious people with whom he disagrees, but can find how their religious perspective provides a coherent system of reasoning for them. Astute and wise, with sound suggestions for changing the emphasis in public discussi ...more
I am reading this book for my Sociology of Religion class.
It is a good read just to see an interesting perspective on politics and religion. After reading this book, i find that Carter keeps a nice balance between the religious and non-religious. You can tell that Carter is religious, but he does not superimpose it on the reader. I recommend this book to anyone who wants a new perspective.
I appreciated Carter's somewhat provocative perspective, which challenges the assumptions of both conservatives & liberals. Unfortunately, the message was really pretty simple & got repeated over & over--like most popular nonfiction books, so I got bored after a while.
A really good understanding and critique of how religion has been abused by our legal system. Although I am a strict separationist and believe deeply in the "wall" -- it expresses to me the heart of the 1st amendment -- I like this book and some of his arguments.
Jim B
This was a book that changed tv and movies!

When President Clinton was seen carrying this book, many people read Stephen Carter's assessment of how religion was being excluded from media. Suddenly tv shows started including religious characters.
I read this in college, but I still think about it all the time. It's a non-fiction description of how our culture tends to cow faithful folks into acting differently in public and pretending their beliefs don't matter to them.
First time I read this in college, I so connected with this. It explains our freedom of religions turned into freedom from religions rather than freedom for religions.
Aug 06, 2011 Andrew added it
An important book for both the religious and non-religious, but certainly a must read for Christians.
Interesting ideas about the role of faith in a democratic society.
Marc Manley
Jan 02, 2011 Marc Manley marked it as to-read
Shelves: religion
Thanks to Ebadur for the referral.
Stephen Hallquist
A must read...Period!
to dnt just other person
Richard Kuchynskas
Richard Kuchynskas marked it as to-read
May 16, 2015
Jason added it
May 02, 2015
Simone marked it as to-read
Apr 27, 2015
Katie marked it as to-read
Apr 21, 2015
Jan marked it as to-read
Apr 16, 2015
Margaret Norell-Carley
Margaret Norell-Carley marked it as to-read
Apr 12, 2015
Rachel marked it as to-read
Mar 30, 2015
Joshua Fayez
Joshua Fayez marked it as to-read
Mar 27, 2015
Iantha marked it as to-read
Mar 22, 2015
Jessica Robinson
Jessica Robinson marked it as to-read
Mar 04, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 14 15 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The American Religion
  • The Naked Public Square: Religion and Democracy in America
  • Edge City: Life on the New Frontier
  • The End of Racism: Finding Values in an Age of Technoaffluence
  • Culture of Complaint: The Fraying of America (American Lectures)
  • Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life
  • On First Principles
  • Resident Aliens
  • Holy Days: The World Of The Hasidic Family
  • The Great Disruption: Human Nature and the Reconstitution of Social Order
  • The Twilight of American Culture
  • Blood Sport: The Truth Behind the Scandals in the Clinton White House
  • The Promise of Paradox: A Celebration of Contradictions in the Christian Life
  • I Loved a Girl: A Private Correspondence
  • The Death of Satan: How Americans Have Lost the Sense of Evil
  • Real Love for Real Life: The Art and Work of Caring
  • Christians at the Border: Immigration, the Church, and the Bible
  • Open Secrets: A Memoir of Faith and Discovery
Stephen L. Carter is the William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law at Yale where he has taught since 1982. He has published seven critically acclaimed nonfiction books on topics ranging from affirmative action to religion and politics. His first novel, The Emperor of Ocean Park (2002), was an immediate national best seller. His latest novel is New England White (Knopf, 2007). A recipient of the NAA ...more
More about Stephen L. Carter...
The Emperor of Ocean Park New England White The Impeachment of Abraham Lincoln Palace Council Jericho's Fall

Share This Book