Angry Gods

The Science of Religion Goes Very Wrong

In 2019, the latest imposing new paper on religion was an ambitious Big Data project. Titled "Complex societies precede moralizing gods throughout world history," and published in top science journal Nature, the project got its start in 2011.

An international team led by anthropologist Harvey Whitehouse, director of the Centre for the Study of Social Cohesion at the University of Oxford, tracked 414 societies from the Stone Age to the Industrial Revolution (encompassing 10,000 years) over 30 geographic regions. The team relied on a boffo database of academic articles called Seshat, named (it seems) after the ancient Egyptian goddess of literacy and numeracy.

And what did the researchers tell the world...


is a Canadian journalist, author, and blogger. She blogs at Blazing Cat Fur, Evolution News & Views, MercatorNet, Salvo, and Uncommon Descent.

This article originally appeared in Salvo, Issue #59, Winter 2021 Copyright © 2024 Salvo |


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