This week in the classroom we performed a Jigsaw activity. In this activity we were paired into groups and were instructed to read two articles, one assigned, and one chosen. My articles were Roger Finke’s “An Unsecular America” and Linda Woodhead’s “Gendering Secularization Theory”. Roger Finke’s “An Unsecular America” surrounded the topic of the traditional secularization model of the investable decay of religion. Finke highlights the aspects of this model that may pertain to Europe but not the United States. He explains that these contradictions may be in place for a few reasons. A few of the main reasons being that the US has a separation of church and state and religious regulations are not in place in the US. He uses data and statistics to strengthen his argument that the United States’ religious beliefs are not decaying.
In contrast, Linda Woodhead’s “Gendering Secularization Theory” is an argument stating that men and women in the US have drastically different experiences with religion. She states that when observing the decline in religious attendance, you must look at the data with the realization that men and women have left at varying rates. She states that this difference in the relationship with religion is based on the roles in the household and in the workplace that women have. She states that there are now three different types of women today. The ones who are stay at home moms, the ones who are focused on the workplace and the women who are in-between.