Kathleen Goodman and John Mueller are two academics that kind of fly under the radar in the atheist community. In 2009 they published a study in the Chronicle of Higher Education titled Atheist Students on Campus: From Misconceptions to Inclusion. That paper influenced my life greatly and I used it repeatedly when I was high school organizer with the SSA.
They’ve each published new papers that I’m currently reading and thought I’d pass along to you.
The first, by Mueller, is Understanding the Atheist College Student: A Qualitative Examination. It was recently published in the Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice.
The purpose of this study was to examine and understand atheist college students’ views on faith and how they experience the college campus as a result. I conducted interviews with 16 undergraduate and graduate self-identified atheist college students. Students discussed losing faith and transitioning to atheism; making meaning of life, death, and morality; and experiencing campus life as an atheist. Theoretical considerations as well as implications for practice and research are presented.
The other, by Goodman, is Do Atheism and Feminism Go Hand-In-Hand?: A Qualitative Investigation of Atheist Men’s Perspectives About Gender Equality.
Drawing upon semi-structured interviews with 10 self-identified atheist men in the American Midwest, this qualitative study explored their perspectives regarding atheism, gender, and feminism. The data was analyzed using consensual qualitative research methodology (Hill, Thompson, & Williams, 1997). Results indicated these men had a proclivity for freethought—a commitment to questioning things and prioritizing reason over all else. They believed gender differences were primarily due to cultural and social influence in society. Gender inequality was highlighted as a problem within the U.S. and throughout the world, however this belief did not necessarily lead to being feminist-identified. There appeared to be a pathway linking their intellectual orientation, atheism, and belief in gender equality.
Check ’em out.