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

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  201 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
The Culture of Disbelief has been the subject of an enormous amount of media attention from the first moment it was published.  Hugely successful in hardcover, the Anchor paperback is sure to find a large audience as the ever-increasing, enduring debate about the relationship of church and state in America continues. In The Culture of Disbelief, Stephen Carter explains how ...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

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
Gary Miller
Feb 01, 2010 rated it really liked it
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
...more
Susie
Mar 01, 2008 rated it it was amazing
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
Ange
Mar 01, 2009 rated it it was ok
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.
Michael Vincent
It took me awhile to get through this, but overall Carter takes his liberal Christian perspective and argues that a person's religious views should not disqualify him from entering the political and social argument. He gives many examples of how a person's religion played a role in their public decisions, and how society, rightly or wrongly, reacted to these decisions. Many important court cases are discussed throughout. A thought provoking book.
Adrienne
Dec 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
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.
The Thousander Club
Mar 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
As I am wont to do, I checked the references on a talk I listened to given by Dallin H. Oaks. In 2011, Oaks gave a talk at a CES devotional titled Truth & Tolerance. Among the 17 sources he used, one was Stephen L. Carter's The Culture of Disbelief, which caught my attention. The subject matter has a special interest to me, and I was happy to find a serious work from an academic scholar on such an important topic as religious freedom.

Carter is a practicing Christian, as in he attends Church,
...more
Dale
Jan 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
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
...more
Sheldon Lehman
Jun 20, 2012 rated it liked it
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
Megan
Apr 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
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.
Marvin
Aug 13, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: religion
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.
Bob
Oct 26, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
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
Jul 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, nonfiction
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.
Ureka
to dnt just other person
Stephen Hallquist
Jun 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A must read...Period!
Misty
May 31, 2008 rated it really liked it
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.
Marc Manley
Jan 02, 2011 marked it as to-read
Shelves: religion
Thanks to Ebadur for the referral.
Jodi
Aug 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
Interesting ideas about the role of faith in a democratic society.
Andrew
Aug 06, 2011 added it
An important book for both the religious and non-religious, but certainly a must read for Christians.
Emily
rated it liked it
Sep 04, 2010
Laurie
rated it really liked it
Jun 22, 2010
Gary
rated it really liked it
May 31, 2007
Timothy Hall
rated it really liked it
Oct 16, 2013
Rich
rated it really liked it
Aug 04, 2007
Sera
rated it liked it
Feb 19, 2014
Celene
rated it really liked it
Jun 08, 2009
Kellen
rated it liked it
Oct 08, 2015
Peter
rated it it was amazing
May 03, 2012
Amy
rated it liked it
Aug 02, 2008
David
rated it really liked it
Jul 04, 2012
Rsleatherwood
rated it it was amazing
Nov 04, 2011
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Under God
  • The American Religion
  • Good Catholics: The Battle over Abortion in the Catholic Church
  • There's No Such Thing as Free Speech: And It's a Good Thing, Too
  • The Twilight of American Culture
  • Edge City: Life on the New Frontier
  • The Naked Public Square: Religion and Democracy in America
  • The End of Racism: Finding Values in an Age of Technoaffluence
  • The Mark of the Sacred
  • The Christian Philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas
  • On First Principles
  • Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life
  • Blood Sport: The Truth Behind the Scandals in the Clinton White House
  • Leaves from the Notebook of a Tamed Cynic
  • White Weddings: Romancing Heterosexuality in Popular Culture
  • The Great Disruption: Human Nature and the Reconstitution of Social Order
  • The Promise of Paradox: A Celebration of Contradictions in the Christian Life
  • Christians at the Border: Immigration, the Church, and the Bible
43656
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...