Irreligion in Latin America

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Irreligious Latin Americans
Total population
Population in Latin America:
Not religious: 16%
Religious: 84%
Religions
Irreligion (Nones)
(including agnosticism, atheism, deism, skepticism, freethought/freethinker, secular humanism, ignosticism, Nonbeliever, Non-theist, Rationalist)

Irreligion in Latin America refers to various types of irreligion, including atheism, agnosticism, deism, secular humanism, secularism and non-religious. According to a global survey conducted in 2011, 16% of the population has no religion (13% of non-religious, 2% atheists convinced and 1% didn't know answer).[1][2][3]

Percentage by country[edit]

Country Percentage of the Local Population Population in
(millions)
Uruguay Uruguay 47[4][5] 1.6
Cuba Cuba 40[6][7] 4.6
Chile Chile 29[8] 5.2
El Salvador El Salvador 24[9][10] 1.4
Dominican Republic Dominican Republic 19[11][12] 2.1
Guatemala Guatemala 18.3[13] 2.6
Argentina Argentina 16[14][15] 6.6
Nicaragua Nicaragua 15.7[16] 0.911
Belize Belize 15.6[17] 0.051
Honduras Honduras 14[18] 1.243
Venezuela Venezuela 11.7[12][19] 3.2
Puerto Rico Puerto Rico 11.1[12] 0.400
Costa Rica Costa Rica 09[14] 0.405
Ecuador Ecuador 08.05[20] 1.2
Mexico Mexico 08.04[21] 09.5
Brazil Brazil 08.04[22] 16.1
Colombia Colombia 07[23] 03.3
Peru Peru 06.1[24] 2.0
Panama Panama 05.1[14] 0.166
Bolivia Bolivia 03[25] 0.318
Paraguay Paraguay 02[26] 0.142
Haiti Haiti 01[27] 0.095

Central America and Caribbean[edit]

Belize[edit]

According to the 2010 census, about 15.5% of the population of Belize is not religious. This is an increase from 9.4% reported in the 2000 census, and is the second largest category in the country, with the first being Roman Catholicism. [28]

Costa Rica[edit]

Approximately 9% of the Costa Rican population is not religious (6% non-religious and 3% atheists).

Cuba[edit]

Estimates of the Cuban people without religion varies from 30% to 40%, the number of atheists also varies from 10% to 20%. Due to the influence of communism in the country, atheism has grown and is promoted in the population.[citation needed] Religious organizations are prohibited from promoting their faith to the population (at least not publicly).[citation needed]

Dominican Republic[edit]

Religiously unaffiliated people account for 18% of the public in the Dominican Republic.[29]

El Salvador[edit]

El Salvador is the least religious country in Central America and the Caribbean. This percentage is sizable: 24%. Of these, 13% are atheist and 11% are people without religion.

Guatemala[edit]

According to a series of public opinion surveys (mainly CBN and CID Gallup Poll), Guatemala has had a progressive advance of irreligion, from 11.1% in 1990 to 14.2% in 2001 and 18.3% in 2008. The percentage of atheists round by 10% and 8.3% is considered simply non-religious.

Haiti[edit]

In Haiti, 1% of the population are not religious.[30]

Honduras[edit]

In Honduras 14% is considered without religion (10% non-religious and 4% atheists)

Mexico[edit]

According to a 2010 census by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), the percentage of non-religious is 8% (4.7% of atheists convinced) more than five million of non-religious people. A survey question in 2006 by CID-Gallup 'Is religion important to you?' 20.5% said no, and almost 5% did not answer or said sometimes.

Nicaragua[edit]

Nicaragua has also experienced a decline in religious affiliation, according to the 1995 census, about 8.5% of Nicaraguans had no religion, although the 2005 census shows an increase to 15.7%, of which 9% is non-religious and 6.7% atheists.

Panama[edit]

About 5% of Panamanians are irreligious (3% non-religious and 2% atheists).

Puerto Rico[edit]

Irreligion in Puerto Rico is a new phenomenon, and has grown in recent years; about 11.1% of Puerto Ricans today have no religion (6% non-religious and 5.1% atheists).

South America[edit]

Argentina[edit]

A survey conducted in August 2008 (CEIL / CONICET) reports that 11.3% of Argentines are non-religious. It is observed that 90% believe in God and 10% do not. Gender, age, education level and geographical location have all been cited as variables for irreligion. Among men aged 18–29, those with better education and those from the most progressive, "modern" areas tend towards a lack of belief in God (83% and 89%).[15] A CID-Gallup poll affirms that in Argentina 16% of the population claims to be irreligious (8% non-religious and 8% atheists)

Bolivia[edit]

In Bolivia a large majority of the population is fanatically religious, of which only 3% of the population is atheist, agnostic or non-religious. A study of the city of Sucre estimated that 7% have no religion (the least religious area of the country).

Brazil[edit]

Although in Brazil a large majority of the population is religious a demographic census in 2000 by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) said that 7.3% of the population is atheist, agnostic or non-religious (12 million). In 2010, the IBGE revealed that the increase to 8.3% (15 million),although the increase was only 1%, but in quantity amounted to three million increase.[31]

Chile[edit]

In Chile, the proportion of people who are religious fell from 92% in 1993 to 71% in 2013 (according to the Latinobarometro). In 1993 the percentage of agnostics or atheists was 8%, but in 2011 and 2013 had reached 29% (5 million people). Almost 17% of Chileans are atheist and 12% non-religious.In September 2011, a group of atheists founded the Atheist Society of Chile (In Spanish: Sociedad Atea de Chile).[8] According to Latinbarometer poll in 2017 Chile is the second most irreligious country in South America after Uruguay with 38% of the population not following any religion. [32]

Colombia[edit]

According to a national census of Colombia from 1997 to 2004, non-religious people increased from 2.2% to 7% and convinced atheists remain at 0.4%. Americas Barometer reveals little change for 2009, placing a 6.1% non-religious and atheists convinced 0.6%. In Colombian modern areas there are atheist organizations.

Ecuador[edit]

According to the National Statistics Institute of Ecuador in 2011, 8.05% of Ecuadorians are not religious (7.94% atheists and 0.11% agnostics). There are atheists and secular organizations in the capital (Quito).

Paraguay[edit]

According to the 2012 Pew Global Religious Landscape study, 1.1% of Paraguayans are religiously unaffiliated. [33]

Peru[edit]

The non-religious population has been doubling between 1993 and 2007, according to the National Institute of Statistics Informaticas (INEI), in 1993 1.9% declared no religion (0.4% of atheists convinced), then in the 2007 this percentage increased to 2.7% (1.3% of atheists convinced). Although a survey by Phil Zuckerman showed that the percentage was 5.5%, also he see a reduction of 96% religious in 1993 to 86% in 2007.[24]

Uruguay[edit]

Uruguay is the most secularized nation in the Americas with the highest percentage of atheists and agnostics.[34] 17.2% atheist or agnostic according to Uruguayan census.[35] While according to the most recent official survey approximately 58.1% of Uruguayans define themselves as Christian,[36] Many Uruguayans nominally describe themselves as Roman Catholics but lifestyle is not affected by the religion.[37]

According to Kaufmann, E. (2010), between 29% to 53% (Endorsed by 47%) of Uruguayans are not religious, more than half are atheists and the other part is distributed between agnostics and non-religious,[4] according to a national census conducted in 2007, 40% of Uruguayans are not religious, 20% believe in God but do not belong to any religion, 17% are atheists or agnostics, and 3% didn't know answer.[38]

Irreligion in Uruguay is not a new phenomenon, although is growing considerably. Uruguay in religious and irreligious terms is similar to Europe, where modernization, economic growth, have brought atheism, since 1990, Uruguayans referred Easter Week as "Tourism Week". Uruguay is also the most democratic country in the region observed for its civic culture.

Venezuela[edit]

In Venezuela secularization has been influencing the country, this is due to the increasing modernization of the country and improvement of education, during the 20th century Venezuela was one of the most religious countries with a dominant Catholicism, although in the early twenty-first century Protestants, atheists, agnostics, among other religions have grown in the country, the most professional people (scientists, doctors, writers, etc.) are often less believers. According to a study by the University of Cambridge, 11.7% of Venezuelans are without religion (atheists 6% and 5.7% of non-religious), also a national study estimated that 6% of Venezuelans are agnostics and 2% atheists (in total of 8% of the population).

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "RELIGION AND ATHEISM" (PDF). Atheistalliance.org. Retrieved 2014-10-11.[dead link]
  2. ^ Adam Lee. "The Coming Atheist Demographic Tide". Big Think. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  3. ^ "A secular Latin America? - The Christian Century". The Christian Century. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Atheism to Defeat Religion By 2038". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  5. ^ "Encuesta Nacional de Hogares Amplidada - 2006" (PDF) (in Spanish). Ine.gub.uy. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2006-09-23. Retrieved 2013-09-07.
  6. ^ Zuckerman, Phil. "Atheism: Contemporary Rates and Patterns", from the Cambridge Companion to Atheism, edited by Michael Martin, University of Cambridge Press, 2007 Archived 2009-06-12 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Religion In Cuba". Prolades.com. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  8. ^ a b "Disminuyen los católicos y crecen los agnósticos en Chile". La segunda online. Retrieved 2014-10-13.
  9. ^ CID Gallup Poll Latinoamerica Archived 2016-03-07 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "International Religious Freedom Report for 2014". U.S. State Department. 2015. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
  11. ^ "2010 Report on International Religious Freedom – Dominican Republic". UNHCR. 17 November 2010. Retrieved 30 March 2011.
  12. ^ a b c Zuckerman, Phil (2007). "Atheism: Contemporary Rates and Patterns". The Cambridge Companion to Atheism. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 1-139-82739-1. Archived from the original on October 21, 2010. Retrieved January 20, 2011.
  13. ^ Clifton L. Holland (8 February 2009). "Public Opinion Polls on Religious Affiliation in Guatemala: 1990-2008" (PDF). prolades.com. Retrieved 18 January 2016.
  14. ^ a b c "Table Of Statistics On Religion In The Americas". Prolades.com. April 2001. Retrieved 2011-02-04. CID Gallup survey
  15. ^ a b Mallimaci, Fortunato; Esquivel, Juan Cruz; Irrazabal, Gabriela. "PRIMERA ENCUESTA SOBRE CREENCIAS Y ACTITUDES RELIGIOSAS EN ARGENTINA" (PDF). CEIL/CONICET. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-10-10. Retrieved 2014-10-13.
  16. ^ "2005 Nicaraguan Census" (PDF). National Institute of Statistics and Census of Nicaragua (in Spanish). pp. 42–43. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2006-11-29. Retrieved 30 October 2007.
  17. ^ Belize Population and Housing Census 2010: Country Report (PDF). Belmopan, Belize C.A.: Statistical Institute of Belize. 2013. p. 23. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 January 2016. Retrieved 12 September 2015.
  18. ^ Religion in Honduras - CID Gallup Poll 2007 US. State
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  20. ^ (in Spanish) El 80% de ecuatorianos es católico Archived 2016-05-27 at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ Panorama de las religiones en México 2010 (PDF). Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía. p. 3. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 October 2015. Retrieved 28 December 2014.
  22. ^ IBGE - Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística (Brazilian Institute for Geography and Statistics). 2010 Census. Accessed 07.08.2012.
  23. ^ "Colombia". Vanderbilt.edu. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  24. ^ a b "Peru Seen As One Of World's Most Religious Countries". Peruvian Times. Retrieved 2014-10-13.
  25. ^ Alejandro Díaz‐Domínguez (2009). "Perspectivas desde el Barómetro de las Américas: 2009, No. 29" (PDF). americasbarometer.org. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 June 2010.
  26. ^ "2002 census data". Dgeec.gov.py. Retrieved 5 February 2012.
  27. ^ "Haiti: People and Society". CIA World Factbook. Retrieved 18 January 2016.
  28. ^ https://sib.org.bz/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Census_Report_2010.pdf
  29. ^ "Religion in Latin America - Pew Research Center". 13 November 2014. Retrieved 17 October 2018.
  30. ^ "International Religious Freedom Report for 2014: Haiti". US Department of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor. 2014. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
  31. ^ "IBGE - Sala de imprensa - notícias". Ibge.gov.br. Archived from the original on 2012-10-09. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  32. ^ "Cifra de chilenos que se declaran católicos bajó de 73% a 45% en la última década". 24 Horas.
  33. ^ http://assets.pewresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/11/2014/01/global-religion-full.pdf
  34. ^ "Atheism: Contemporary Rates and Patterns 1" (PDF). Pitzer.edu. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-06-12. Retrieved 2012-10-01.
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  36. ^ "Encuesta Nacional de Hogares Amplidada - 2006" (PDF). National Institute of Statistics (in Spanish). INHA. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-09-27. Retrieved 2013-09-07.
  37. ^ Leslie Jermyn; Winnie Wong (2009). Uruguay. Marshall Cavendish. p. 77. ISBN 978-0-7614-4482-4. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  38. ^ "Uruguay Segment of 2010 International Religious Freedom Report". Archives.uruguay.usembassy.gov. Archived from the original on 2014-12-14. Retrieved 17 January 2015.