Posts Tagged ‘New Atheism’
In this age of overt commercialization of the holiday season—where no sooner have children returned from trick-or-treating than Christmas music is pumped through convenience store aisles on loop—Americans have become accustomed to the omnipresence of seasonal cheer. But, as Laurie Goodstein noted in The New York Times the this past week, there is a new band of interest groups wrangling for the holiday spotlight: “Just in time for the holiday season, Americans are about to be hit with a spate of advertisements promoting the joy and wisdom of atheism.”
Last Wednesday evening, eminent theorist of literature and culture Terry Eagleton gave a talk at Columbia University entitled “The New Atheism and the War on Terror.” New Atheism is also the subject of last year’s Reason, Faith, and Revolution: Reflections on the God Debate, which developed as the product of his Terry Lectures (no relation) given at Yale in 2008. Having never seen Eagleton speak before, the talk surprised me in a few ways, so I’d like to give a short review and also use the occasion to address some issues that were conspicuously absent given the title of the lecture.