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Evangelical Men Make Better Fathers

The book, Soft Patriarchs, New Men: How Christianity Shapes Fathers and Husbands challenges stereotypes about evangelical family life. Written by University of Virginia sociologist W. Bradford Wilcox, the book states that religious men, especially evangelical Protestants, are more involved as husbands and fathers than men who are not religious. "Evangelical Protestant dads come out on top compared with every religious group in the U.S.," says Wilcox. He goes on to say that religion "domesticates men in ways that make them more retentive to the ideals and aspirations of their wives and children."

"Religious congregations give young families social support and enforce certain norms about what it means to be a good father," Wilcox says. According to his findings, evangelical Protestant men are more likely to expect their school-age children to report their whereabouts, and more likely to show affection toward their children than religiously unaffiliated men. They also have the lowest rates of domestic violence of any group in the United States.

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