By the same authors

From the same journal

From the same journal

From the same journal

The Stickiness of Non-Religion? Intergenerational Transmission and the Formation of Non-Religious Identities in Childhood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Full text download(s)

Published copy (DOI)



Publication details

DateAccepted/In press - 3 May 2019
DateE-pub ahead of print - 25 Jun 2019
DatePublished (current) - 1 Dec 2019
Issue number6
Number of pages17
Pages (from-to)1094-1110
Early online date25/06/19
Original languageEnglish


The rapid rise of those identifying as ‘non-religious’ across many countries has prompted growing interest in the ‘religious nones’. A now burgeoning literature has emerged, challenging the idea that ‘non-religion’ is the mere absence of religion and exploring the substantive beliefs, practices and identities that are associated with so-called unbelief. Yet we know little about the micro-processes through which this cultural shift towards non-religion is taking place. Drawing on data from an ethnographic study, this article examines how, when, where, and with whom children learn to be non-religious, and considers the different factors that are implicated in the formation of non-religious identities. While research on religious transmission has demonstrated the importance of the family, our multi-sited approach reveals the important role also played by both school context and children’s own reflections in shaping their formation as non-religious, suggesting a complex pattern of how non-religious socialization is occurring in Britain today.

Bibliographical note

© 2019, SAGE Publications. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details.

    Research areas

  • Childhood, Non-Religion, Secular, Socialization, Transmission, Non-Religious Childhood, Non-Religious Children, Atheist Children, Agnostic Children, Non-Religious Parents, non-religious children, non-religion, childhood, non-religious parents, atheist children, transmission, secular, non-religious childhood, agnostic children, socialization

Discover related content

Find related publications, people, projects, datasets and more using interactive charts.

View graph of relations