International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

Examining Intolerance of Atheist Speech over Time and Across Generations
April K. Clark, Michael Clark

Since the mid-1950’s, the study of political intolerance has been an important element in public opinion research. Much of the debate has focused on whether, why, how, and with what consequences tolerance has changed in the United States. Little is known about the dynamics of intolerance over long periods of time by the same individuals and across generations. This research addresses the issue of stability and the interrelationship of social, political, and psychological characteristics with intolerance of anti-religious speech. The analysis represents substantial progress in the effort to understand political intolerance arising from generational, life-cycle, and period effects. The longitudinal results show that individuals became less intolerant, but that cleavages exist between the generation coming of age in the 1960’s as compared with the previous and successive generations.

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