Atheism

atheism (ā´thē-Ĭz´əm), denial of the existence of God or gods and of any supernatural existence, to be distinguished from agnosticism, which holds that the existence cannot be proved. The term atheism has been used as an accusation against all who attack established orthodoxy, as in the trial of Socrates. There were few avowed atheists from classical times (although a number of distinguished thinkers in classical Greece were atheists) until the 19th cent., when popular belief in a conflict between religion and science brought forth preachers of the gospel of atheism. Subsequently, there have been many individuals and groups professing atheism, including Bertrand Russell, Madalyn Murry O'Hair, Christopher Hitchens, and Richard Dawkins.

See T. Whitmarsh, Battling the Gods: Atheism in the Ancient World (2015).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

Atheism: Selected full-text books and articles

Atheism: A Reader By S. T. Joshi Prometheus Books, 2000
PRIMARY SOURCE
A primary source is a work that is being studied, or that provides first-hand or direct evidence on a topic. Common types of primary sources include works of literature, historical documents, original philosophical writings, and religious texts.
The Non-Existence of God By Nicholas Everitt Routledge, 2003
Faith No More: Why People Reject Religion By Phil Zuckerman Oxford University Press, 2011
Atheism: A Philosophical Justification By Michael Martin Temple University Press, 1990
PRIMARY SOURCE
A primary source is a work that is being studied, or that provides first-hand or direct evidence on a topic. Common types of primary sources include works of literature, historical documents, original philosophical writings, and religious texts.
Philosophy & Atheism: In Defense of Atheism By Kai Nielsen Prometheus Books, 1985
PRIMARY SOURCE
A primary source is a work that is being studied, or that provides first-hand or direct evidence on a topic. Common types of primary sources include works of literature, historical documents, original philosophical writings, and religious texts.
Why Atheism? By George H. Smith Prometheus Books, 2000
Naturalism without Foundations By Kai Nielsen Prometheus Books, 1996
Librarian's tip: Part Four "Toward a Nonscientistic Atheism"
The Human Enterprise: An Attempt to Relate Philosophy to Daily Life By M. C. Otto Crofts, 1940
Librarian's tip: Chap. X "The Two Atheisms"
Religion without God By Ray Billington Routledge, 2002
The Self-Overcoming of Nihilism By Nishitani Keiji; Graham Parkes; Setsuko Aihara State University of New York Press, 1990
Librarian's tip: "The Problem of Atheism" begins on p. 183
God? A Debate between a Christian and an Atheist By William Lane Craig; Walter Sinnott-Armstrong Oxford University Press, 2004
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