This study examines the influence of familism, religion, and their interaction on participation in secular voluntary associations. We develop an insularity theory to explain how familism and religion encourage Americans to avoid secular civic participation. Using data from the first wave of the National Survey of Families and Households, this study finds that familism reduces participation in secular organizations. Moreover, religion moderates the effect of familism: specifically, religious involvement tends to increase the negative effect of familism on secular civic participation. Although religious involvement in and of itself fosters secular civic participation, strong familism tends to dampen positive impacts of religious involvement. For familistic individuals, religious congregations appear to reinforce their insularity within their immediate social circle and family.
Kim, Young-Il and Wilcox, W. Bradford, "Bonding Alone: Familism, Religion, and Secular Civic Participation" (2013). Faculty Publications - Department of World Languages, Sociology & Cultural Studies. 36.