The Lives of Nones (and the People Who Study Them)
Latest surveys demonstrate that approximately 15% of Americans claim no religious affiliation. These "Nones" are quickly becoming an integral part of the religious landscape in the United States today. But what kinds of sociological pressures do these Nones face, especially in a world so embedded within a congregational or religious framework of social participation? How do Nones face life stages (such as child-rearing and community-building) without the typical sources of support that churches and other religious organizations often provide their congregants? Moreover, what kinds of difficulties confront the researcher of Nones? How might the study of religion in the United States change with this fast-growing population?
Alfredo Garcia holds a Masters of Theological Studies degree from Harvard Divinity School and will pursue his Ph.D. in Sociology of Religion at Princeton beginning in the fall of 2011. After graduating from Duke University, Alfredo was a Colet Fellow at St. Paul's School in London, England. More recently he has worked as a journalist for Religion News Service. His research interests include the sociology of religion, science and religion, and science and politics.