A survey of English professors at 34 top U.S. colleges and
universities yielded a surprising result: Almost every single one
said that young people need to know more about the Bible if they
were to adequately understand both the classics of Western
literature and contemporary work.
“Loss of recognition [of the Bible] in the last three or four
decades has put much of Western literature beyond the reach of many
readers,” said Dr. David Lyle Jeffrey, who is distinguished
professor of literature and the humanities at Baylor University.
What surprised Dr. Marie Wachlin, who did the research for the study
on behalf of the Bible Literacy Project, was how much agreement
there was among the 39 English professors surveyed.
“The virtual unanimity and depth of their responses on this question
were striking,” Wachlin said. “The Bible is not only a sacred
scripture to millions of Americans, it is also arguably, as one
professor put it, the most influential text in all of Western
The professors who were surveyed teach at universities which
included Yale, Harvard, Stanford and Princeton.