There is no ‘required reading’ in order to identify yourself as a Humanist, but we often hear from people that they would like to learn more about this philosophy of life. The following are a few resources that allow you to find out more about the history of Humanism, famous Humanists and Humanism in popular culture…

Learn About Humanism

The British Humanist Association offers a simple guide:

The Really Simple Guide to Humanism

Free courses in Humanism are offered by the Humanist Institute at:

Find out how to celebrate Humanism on World Humanist Day:

You are in good company –  have a look at this list of famous Humanists:

Stay informed by reading this Canadian Humanist magazine:

Further Reading

  • The Philosophy of Humanism – Corliss Lamont
  • Good without God, what a billion non-religious people do believe – by Greg Epstein,
  • Humanism: A Very Short Introduction – Stephen Law
  • Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism – Susan Jacoby
  • Making the Manifesto – William Schulz
  • The Good Book: A Humanist Bible – A.C. Grayling
  • Parenting Beyond Belief – Dale McGowan
  • The Magic of Reality – Richard Dawkins
  • Letter to a Christian Nation – Sam Harris
  • Why I Am Not a Christian –  Bertrand Russell
  • Why are You Atheists So Angry? – Greta Christina
  • Comforting Thoughts about Death that have Nothing to do with God – Greta Christina
  • The Quest for a Moral Compass: A Global History of Ethics – Kenan Malik

Humanism in Popular Culture

The following are a collection of films, television shows, books and authors that may appeal to Humanists. They may not be aimed specifically at Humanists, but they embrace a Humanist mindset.


  • American Beauty (1999)
  • Inherit the Wind (1960)
  • Monty Python’s Life of Brian (1979)
  • Cosmos with Carl Sagan (1980)
  • Little Buddha (1993)
  • The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
  • The Crucible (1996)



  • Chocolat (2000)
  • Jesus Camp (2006)
  • The Invention of Lying (2009)
  • Agora (2009)
  • Creation (2009)
  • The Nature of Existence (2010)
  • The Grey (2012)

TV Shows

  • Star Trek
  • Firefly
  • The Wire
  • The Mentalist
  • QI
  • Doctor Who

Humanist Authors

Many of the people on this list have identified themselves as Humanists, others write with a Humanist perspective that makes their books well worth a read. A few specific book suggestions are included below.

  • Louisa May Alcott
  • Isaac Asimov
  • Margaret Atwood
  • L. Frank Baum
  • Ambrose Bierce
  • Charles Dickens
  • Alexander Dumas
  • Neil Gaiman
  • Joanne Harris
  • Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Robert Heinlein
  • Aldous Huxley
  • Jack London
  • H.P. Lovecraft
  • James A. Michener
  • A.A. Milne
  • George Orwell
  • Edgar Allen Poe
  • Beatrix Potter
  • Terry Pratchett
  • Philip Pullman
  • Gene Roddenberry
  • Dr. Seuss
  • Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Mark Twain
  • Kurt Vonnegut
  • H.G. Wells


  • Candide – Voltaire
  • Sirens of the Titan – Kurt Vonnegut
  • The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
  • 1984 – George Orwell
  • Peaches for Monsieur le Cure – Joanne Harris
  • Letters from the Earth – Mark Twain
  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
  • Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
  • The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam
  • The Elegance of the Hedgehog – Muriel Barbery
  • His Dark Materials Trilogy – Phillip Pullman
  • Good Omens – Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett