Chapter

Conservative Religion

Marta Trzebiatowska and Steve Bruce

in Why are Women more Religious than Men?

Published in print September 2012 | ISBN: 9780199608102
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191744730 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199608102.003.0005
Conservative Religion

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One of the greatest paradoxes in the study of gender and religion is that many young and politically conscious women continue to join, or remain in conservative and patriarchal religious organizations. This chapter brings together several excellent qualitative studies of female evangelicals in North America, and Pentecostals in Latin America and South Africa in order to identify common patterns of attraction to putatively oppressive religions. The focus here is on implicit benefits of religious involvement for women in various parts of the world. Quite simply, some women like patriarchy, while others ignore or subvert what they do not like, but the benefits outweigh the costs. This is not to say that religion acts as a coping tool or that women adopt religious beliefs cynically but that the latent social functions of conservative religion are not desired separately from it but add to its plausibility.

Keywords: conservative religion; evangelicals; Pentecostals; patriarchy; benefits; women

Chapter.  6512 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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