chapter three afternoon tea texts
a revision and re-do of yesterday, with more…
The central question I examine is how religion shapes public environmental concern about global environmental change. I focus on how highly religious people see large-scale ecological conditions and what they know about them. I present a case study of public perceptions, concerns, and understandings about global climate change held by citizens residing in the Midwestern United States. It describes how individuals’ religious views inform their opinions about it as an environmental problem and their judgments on the necessity to address it with environmental policy. I outline the major features of their collective views in subsequent chapters.
My larger purpose for exploring how members of the public like this see global climate change is clarifying further how people in modern industrial societies view ecological impacts associated with widespread fossil fuel use. The goal is better understanding religion’s role in this form of environmental concern by exploring more deeply its cultural foundations, and influences from individuals’ social context, using a qualitative approach. Following a modified constructionist perspective, I explore the extent U.S. conservative Protestants draw on their religious cultural notions in how perceive this example of a global environmental problem. I focus especially on their use of religion with regards to climate science, effects of climate change, and climate policy.
The case study presents the views of fifty-two (52) Evangelical Christians living in the Dayton, Ohio area expressed during unstructured face-to-face interviews with them. Major emergent themes are drawn from participants’ transcripts through qualitative data analysis using NVivo software. I explore their accounts with the conceptual lenses of “stocks of knowledge”, “mental schema”, and “cultural tool kits” (Schutz 1970, Sewell 1992, Swidler 1986). Using this analytical framework and research strategy, I describe the ways participants’ religious beliefs, attitudes, values, and other non-scientific cultural resources inform their perceptions of climate change or scientific information about it, evaluation and concern about its risks, and their opinions about addressing its effects using climate policy.”
- Public Environmental Concern at ’20-Year Low’ (environmentalleader.com)
- NVivo 10 Software for Unstructured Data Analysis Now Available in Six New Languages (prnewswire.com)