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Christianity and the Secular Border Patrol

The Loss of Judeo-Christian Knowledge


Edited By Barry Kanpol and Mary Poplin

Christianity and the Secular Border Patrol: The Loss of Judeo-Christian Knowledge centrally looks at how secular universities have dominated academic knowledge on the one hand and have also been a part of bias against Christian academics on the other. Authors generally ask for borders of understanding and collegial dialogue to bridge gaps of knowledge that exist because of this bias. Theoretical analysis and narratives from the field describe how overcoming extreme theoretical positions may allow for productive knowledge construction and a more harmonious relationship within the culture wars of our times, especially in higher education.

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2. Secular Privilege: Deconstructing the Invisible Injustice (David R. Hodge)


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2.   Secular Privilege: Deconstructing the Invisible Injustice


As Martin Luther King Jr. (1992 [1963], p. 85) observed, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Human beings are—in a certain sense—interconnected. Injustice that affects one person directly, affects everyone indirectly. Conversely, ameliorating injustice by creating a more equitable society benefits everyone.

People are often acutely aware of the injustices they encounter on an individual level. If we personally experience discrimination, the injustice is typically recognized instantly. Less obvious is discrimination that stems from systemic factors. Indeed, few people in contemporary society give much thought to societal power dynamics and the attendant privilege that emanates from being able to shape cultural discourse (McIntosh, 2015). At best, people develop some awareness of the advantages and disadvantages that members of their own group face in our increasingly multicultural society. Bias that flows from structural inequalities remains largely hidden.

To facilitate movement toward a more socially just society, this chapter examines one of the most invisible structural power imbalances in contemporary society and the resulting privilege that flows from the imbalance—namely secular privilege. Toward this end, the chapter begins by outlining the definitional parameters of privilege and discussing various manifestations of privilege. Next, the concept of secular privilege is defined and common arguments that have been leveled against this concept are presented and countered. A number of representative privileges are delineated to help illustrate...

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