Friday, June 1, 2012

Evangelical Bubble, Meet the Internet

One of my favorite Christian bloggers, the Slacktivist, posted an excellent discussion on how access to information is changing Christianity.  It is very appropriately titled "The Evangelical Bubble Cannot Be Sustained, Part 1 and Part 2."  Here is a quote:

To keep the insular bubble of the evangelical subculture intact has always required some defense mechanisms. “I slammed the encyclopedia shut,” Latebloomer writes, and then, as trained, she “mentally explained away the data as yet one more humanistic attack on God’s obvious truth.” That’s the standard 1-2 combination for those determined to defend the bubble: 1) Keep the walls up and the encyclopedia shut; 2) Inoculate against potential glimpses of “disruptive facts” that get past the perimeter with a mythology of conspiratorial persecution.
But such defenses were never wholly effective, even in the past, when the media threatening to pop the bubble with disruptive truth-telling were mainly libraries and distant colleges that could be avoided or navigated with blinders intact. In the late 20th century, the rise of television and mass media made it more and more difficult for the evangelical subculture to preserve innocence by preserving ignorance. The Internet makes this almost impossible.
I very much appreciated seeing the bigger context of my own experience with the Bible, which I wrote about in my post "Bible Irony."  I would love to hear your own thoughts and experiences as well!

1 comment:

  1. Absolutely. I might still be an evangelical today if not for the Internet. Not only did it have a wealth of content, but it pointed the way to traditional content like books. For me, an important category of book was testimonies of ex-Christians. My local library does not stock them, but it sure was easy to find them on Amazon.