The Humanist

The Humanist is a magazine focusing on critical inquiry and social concern from a humanist perspective. Published by the American Humanist Association, The Humanist covers everything from science and religion to politics and popular culture.

Articles from Vol. 71, No. 6, November-December

A Confraternity of the Fatherless
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Rebecca Goldstein is a philosopher and acclaimed author whose books include the novels The Mind Body Problem, The Dark Sister, and her latest, 36 Arguments for the Existence of God: A Work of Fiction, along with biographical...
All Is Calm, All Is Bright
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] "Silent night, holy night All is calm, all is bright ..." SILENT NIGHT? Absolutely. Holy night? Nearly 2 billion people on the face of our planet would think so. It's approaching midnight on Christmas Eve, and I am standing...
Biblical Scholarship and the Right to Know
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Biblical scholar, author, and former born-again Christian Bart Ehrman is recognized as a preeminent expert in the field of biblical criticism. He has authored over twenty books on subjects ranging from theodicy and the problem...
Editor's Note
AWARDS CEREMONIES are fun, right? People who receive awards from an august body at some sort of gala, such the American Humanist Association's Humanist of the Year banquet, are usually very bright and interesting, and you never really know what they're...
Hospice: An Effective Program That Saves Money
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has recently revised rules that speak to physician participation in the care of patients on hospice. The rules are onerous and threaten the success of one of Medicare's most popular and successful...
How Humanists Get It Right
A fellow humanist once asked, regarding the fact that the American Humanist Association has published three Humanist Manifestos, "Can't we ever get it right?" My answer is that we try to get it as right as we can at the time. Humanism espouses a scientific...
Michelle Bachelet (1951-Present)
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet was born on September 29, 1951, in Santiago, Chile. Her mother was an archaeologist and her father was a Chilean Air Force General whose position required the family to move often....
Nothing to Cheer About
The numbers are similar; which deserves the applause? 234: The number of executions in Texas since Rick Perry has been governor. 271: The number of convictions reversed, including many capital cases, by DNA evidence since the creation of the Innocence...
Religion and Politics: Is There Any Hope for a Divorce?
Election Day 2012 is many months off, but already we're seeing signs that religion will play an unusually prominent role in the campaign. Blame it in part on Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who called for a day-long prayer rally at a Houston football stadium...
Terra Instabilis: From the Arab Spring and the Great Recession to the Eurozone Crisis and Chinese Inflation: Are We Headed toward a New World Disorder?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] IN 1848 EUROPE was convulsed by revolution, the so-called "springtime of the peoples." In 1968 unrest swept through most of the developed world, from Prague to Paris, from Berkeley to Mexico City. These revolutionary outbreaks...
The Body Business: Challenges Facing Women's Health Advocates Today
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Since 1971 Judy Norsigian has been part of the Boston Women's Health Book Collective, also known by the name of its signature publication, Our Bodies, Ourselves (OBOS), and she currently serves as the organization's executive...
Troy Davis and Our Pro-Life Government
On the evening of September 21, when the news was mistakenly announced that long-time death-row inmate Troy Davis would not be executed in Georgia, the crowd I was with erupted in joy and enthusiasm, believing that something good had been done by our...
Will the Next Great Corrupters Please Rise
What is a philosopher? What is a scientist? What is a teacher? What is a poet? When we set about answering such questions in a way that takes us beyond dictionary definitions, we usually find ourselves trying to describe some ideal. By "poet" we really...