Analytic atheism : A cross-culturally weak and fickle phenomenon? / Gervais, Will; van Elk, Michiel; Xygalatas, Dimitris; McKay, Ryan; Aveyard, Mark; Buchtel, Emma; Dar-Nimrod, Ilan; Kundtová Klocová, Eva; Ramsay, Jonathan; Riekki, Tapani; Svedholm-Häkkinen, Annika; Bulbulia, Joseph.

In: Judgment and Decision Making, Vol. 13, No. 3, 05.2018, p. 268-274.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review




  • Will Gervais
  • Michiel van Elk
  • Dimitris Xygalatas
  • Ryan McKay
  • Mark Aveyard
  • Emma Buchtel
  • Ilan Dar-Nimrod
  • Eva Kundtová Klocová
  • Jonathan Ramsay
  • Tapani Riekki
  • Annika Svedholm-Häkkinen
  • Joseph Bulbulia


Religious belief is a topic of longstanding interest to psychological science, but the psychology of religious disbelief is a relative newcomer. One prominently discussed model is analytic atheism, wherein cognitive reflection, as measured with the Cognitive Reflection Test, overrides religious intuitions and instruction. Consistent with this model, performance-based measures of cognitive reflection predict religious disbelief in WEIRD (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, & Democratic) samples. However, the generality of analytic atheism remains unknown. Drawing on a large global sample (N = 3461) from 13 religiously, demographically, and culturally diverse societies, we find that analytic atheism as usually assessed is in fact quite fickle cross-culturally, appearing robustly only in aggregate analyses and in three individual countries. The results provide additional evidence for culture’s effects on core beliefs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)268-274
Number of pages7
JournalJudgment and Decision Making
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2018
This open access research output is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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