Religion and Public Life Survey, 2008

Data Archive > U.S. Surveys > General Population > National > Pew Research Center > Analysis


LITERAL

(Percentages are weighted by WEIGHT; Total Ns reported are unweighted)

If HOLYBOOK = 1: And would you say that [Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word, [or not]? (See Note 7: HOLYBOOK/LITERAL Notes for details on how question wording changed depending on respondent) (Q59)
  1) [Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word
  2) Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally
  3) Other
  9) Don't know/Refused

Category Percentage Cumulative Percentage
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 51.2% 51.2%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 45% 96.2%
Other 1.5% 97.7%
Don't know/Refused 2.4% 100.1%
Total N = 1857

Variable Comparisons

Age (I-AGE)

18-29 30-44 45-59 60-74 75+ TOTAL
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 48.9% 49.1% 52.7% 56.3% 49.3% 51.3%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 47.1% 48.9% 44.5% 39.3% 40.5% 45.0%
Other 0.8% 0.9% 1.9% 0.9% 4.1% 1.4%
Don't know/Refused 3.2% 1.1% 1.0% 3.5% 6.1% 2.3%
TOTAL 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
1837


Worship attendance (I-ATTEND)

More than once a week Once a week Once or twice a month A few times a year Seldom Never TOTAL
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 69.8% 55.4% 36.6% 45.6% 42.6% 36.1% 51.0%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 27.3% 40.8% 59.5% 52.5% 52.0% 50.0% 45.1%
Other 1.5% 1.4% 1.2% 0.3% 2.5% 5.6% 1.5%
Don't know/Refused 1.5% 2.3% 2.7% 1.6% 3.0% 8.3% 2.4%
TOTAL 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
1851


Education (I-EDUC)

Less than high school diploma High school graduate (grade 12 or GED certificate) Business, technical or vocational school AFTER high school or some college (no four-year degree) College graduate (B.S., B.A., or other four-year degree) Post-graduate training or professional schooling after college TOTAL
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 72.5% 56.3% 46.1% 33.7% 25.2% 51.2%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 21.7% 40.2% 50.0% 63.4% 72.7% 45.1%
Other 1.8% 1.4% 1.4% 1.8% 0.7% 1.5%
Don't know/Refused 4.0% 2.1% 2.5% 1.1% 1.4% 2.3%
TOTAL 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
1845


Household income (I-INCOME)

Less than $20,000 $20,000 to under $30,000 $30,000 to under $50,000 $50,000 to under $75,000 $75,000 to under $100,000 $100,000 or more TOTAL
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 63.0% 59.5% 49.7% 47.9% 47.8% 35.3% 51.8%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 33.4% 36.6% 47.4% 50.3% 49.5% 60.8% 45.0%
Other 1.2% 1.3% 1.1% 1.0% 1.6% 0.9% 1.2%
Don't know/Refused 2.4% 2.6% 1.7% 0.7% 1.1% 3.0% 1.9%
TOTAL 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
1639


Political ideology (I-POLITICS)

Very conservative Conservative Moderate Liberal or very liberal TOTAL
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 73.6% 48.4% 36.9% 51.2% 51.7%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 24.5% 48.1% 60.1% 48.0% 45.7%
Other 0.5% 2.1% 1.7% 0.8% 1.4%
Don't know/Refused 1.4% 1.5% 1.3% 0.0% 1.2%
TOTAL 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
874


Religion (I-RELIGION)

Protestant Roman Catholic Other or Jewish None TOTAL
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 57.9% 37.6% 54.0% 45.4% 51.3%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 38.4% 58.1% 43.7% 50.0% 45.0%
Other 1.1% 1.2% 1.6% 2.8% 1.3%
Don't know/Refused 2.6% 3.1% 0.6% 1.9% 2.3%
TOTAL 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
1834


Sex (I-SEX)

Male Female TOTAL
[Holy book] is to be taken literally, word for word 51.3% 51.0% 51.2%
Not everything in [Holy book] should be taken literally 45.9% 44.3% 45.0%
Other 1.5% 1.3% 1.4%
Don't know/Refused 1.3% 3.3% 2.4%
TOTAL 100.0% 100.0%
1857



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