Why Atheists Should Be Feminists

I've been writing since the beginning of Daylight Atheism about the unique ways that religion harms women. Although men have also suffered innumerable harms from religious beliefs, they're not singled out, treated as an underclass uniquely deserving of condemnation, the way that women are in almost every major religion's sacred texts. That's why I wrote in posts like 2006's "Religion's Harm to Women":There is only one realistic way to end religion's harm to women, and that is to cut it off at … [Read more...]

Book Review: The Atheist’s Creed

(Editor's Note: This review was solicited and is written in accordance with this site's policy for such reviews.)Summary: A scholarly survey of the atheism of dead white guys.Much like Christopher Hitchens' The Portable Atheist, Dr. Michael Palmer's The Atheist's Creed is intended as an anthology of atheist thought from historical to modern times. Beginning with the ancient Greeks, Palmer traces the development of atheist thought to the European Enlightenment, then branches out into … [Read more...]

Magister Ludi Magisteria

By Sarah BraaschIn loving memory of my baby brother, Jacob Michael Braasch (1/28/86 – 02/02/10)Masters of the shell game have been swindling and duping the overconfident and the ignorant for millennia. The game operator places a "pea" beneath one of three "shells". The operator then shuffles the shells in front of the player before asking the player to guess at the pea's location. Unbeknownst to the player, the operator has removed the pea via a sleight-of-hand technique. It is impossible f … [Read more...]

The Contributions of Freethinkers: Richard Leakey

Atheists have a great number of famous names to our credit. We can justly claim renowned composers, scientists, musicians, civil rights leaders - and conservationists, as we'll see in today's post on the contributions of freethinkers.Richard Leakey was born in Nairobi in 1944, son of the famous archaeologist Louis Leakey. The elder Leakey was a strong supporter of racial equality, and Richard's upbringing reflected that belief. He started school soon after the Mau Mau rebellion had been … [Read more...]

On Sexism and Consciousness-Raising

I've written in the past about religion's harm to women, and the way modern sexism is aided and abetted by ancient religious prejudices that still survive today. Every major holy book has sexist verses, but some of the most misogynistic and the most virulent can be found in the books referred to by Christians as the Old Testament. Since this text is the foundation for religions that comprise over half the population of the world, it's small wonder that oppressive, sexist ideas still have so much … [Read more...]

A Response to "The White Stuff"

Earlier this week, I posted a piece by Sikivu Hutchinson, "The White Stuff", about the legacy of racism in science and to what extent issues of race affect the atheist movement. Today, I want to write a response to that piece and venture some of my own thoughts on the subject.To begin, I want to echo one of the more common objections raised in the comments: this piece was long on criticisms, short on suggested solutions. Granted, it's not the responsibility of every woman or member of a … [Read more...]

The White Stuff

A note from the editor:Hi folks,Before I get to today's post, a guest essay by Sikivu Hutchinson, I want to preface it with a few remarks.I've posted guest essays on Daylight Atheism from a variety of viewpoints, not all of which I personally agree with (as I hope should be obvious). I ask readers to keep that especially in mind with this post. I realize there's little probability of a visitor confusing a Christian guest viewpoint with my own, but since Sikivu Hutchinson and I agree about … [Read more...]

Did Christianity Abolish Slavery?

If you've got an ugly or uncomfortable historical record that you'd like to have whitewashed, then Christian fundamentalists are the ideologues for you. Here's their latest bit of doggerel: Christians deserve the credit for abolishing African slavery!Slavery is one of the best examples — far from being a Western Christian invention, it was ubiquitous, and it was only the Christian west that abolished it.Jonathan Sarfati, the author of this article, points out that slavery was ubiquitous in … [Read more...]

Feminism's Freedom Fighter? On Feminism, Atheism and Ayaan Hirsi Ali

By Sikivu HutchinsonIn mainstream media, public conversation about the intersection between atheism and what I will loosely term third world feminism is as rare as Halley's Comet. In the corporate media universe, the groundbreaking work of feminists of African descent like bell hooks, Angela Davis and Patricia Hill Collins remains largely unknown, relegated to academe. Feminism, when invoked at all in mainstream media, is framed as the province of white women, a vestige of a less "enlightened" … [Read more...]

Poetry Sunday: Paul Laurence Dunbar

I'm especially pleased to be able to showcase this new poet in this week's edition of Poetry Sunday. In the past, I've highlighted the lives and the accomplishments of famous African-American freethinkers like W.E.B. DuBois and Zora Neale Hurston, showing that religious skepticism and freethought have always played a lively role in the American black community. Today's post offers another example of that.Paul Laurence Dunbar was born in Ohio in June 1872 to two ex-slaves from Kentucky. His … [Read more...]


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