Episode 206 – Women Leaving Religion, Part II / Sexism and Religion: Can the Knot Be Untied?

Today on CenterStage, Part Two of a two-part panel discussion on women who leave organized religion – plus, in its entirety, a provocative lecture by noted author Katha Pollitt.

On May 17th through 19th, 2013, the Center for Inquiry presented its second annual Women in Secularism conference in Washington, D. C.

Around the world, the forces of religion and superstition are working to contain and even reverse the progress made in the cause of women’s basic human rights. Within the freethought movement, nonbelievers and skeptics are passionately debating the role of social justice, particularly in regard to gender equality and incidences of hostility toward women. Which is the best path forward? Over the next fourteen episodes of CenterStage, we’ll present the discussion.

This week, we present Part Two of the panel discussion titled “Women Leaving Religion.” The session was moderated by blogger Stephanie Zvan, a co-host of Atheists Talk, a rare commercial radio program presenting an atheist perspective, and Associate President of Minnesota Atheists.

Participants included Jamila Bey, an author, editor, and journalist who hosts the syndicated radio show The Sex, Politics, and Religion Hour; Vyckie D. Garrison, a former Christian fundamentalist whose blog, No Longer Quivering, supports women and children who are escaping abusive religious movements; Teresa MacBain, a former Methodist pastor turned atheist who at the time of this event was executive director of Humanists of Florida; and Maryam Namazie, an international rights campaigner and activist who blogs at Nothing Sacred.

Following that is the lecture “Sexism and Religion: Can the Knot Be Untied?” by essayist, critic, and poet Katha Pollitt. Pollitt is a poet, essayist and columnist for The Nation. She has written for many publications, including The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The New York Times, and Free Inquiry.

The conference was chaired by CenterStage co-host Lauren Becker.