Prohibition and Eugenics: Implicit Religions that Failed
23 Pages Posted: 5 Jul 2017
Date Written: June 7, 2015
An implicit religion is a basic belief system that has a religious content, often functions as a religion, and in other regards is a genuine religion but does not explicitly acknowledge this fact (some prefer the term "secular religion") The study of implicit religion has become an important subfield of religious studies today. Besides those implicit religions that have many followers today, it is also illuminating to study historic implicit religions that failed. Two of the leading such implicit religions are the alcohol prohibition movement and the eugenics movement. For the former, its faithful saw the elimination of alcohol from society as a way of saving the world. For the latter, the elimination of “defective” genes from society would have equally profound consequences. This paper studies the histories of prohibition and eugenics from the perspective of implicit religion.
Keywords: implicit religion, secularization of religion, prohibition, eugenics
JEL Classification: B50, B59
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation