The Sum of Small Differences

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:
The Sum of Small Differences

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The question ‘Why are women more religious than men?’ is easy to pose; it is difficult to answer definitively. This chapter concludes the book by acknowledging this limitation, breaking down the answer into small segments and suggesting some explanations that the authors find more plausible than others. Although the question appears to refer to a unitary social fact, it is clear that the causes of gender differences in religiosity differ with time and place. Five explanatory elements are singled out here: lagged effects of secularization; vicarious religion and patriarchy; the control of sexuality; secular gender roles; the body, health and illness. All of these overlap and some have more impact on the gender gap in religiosity than others but the most significant and largest part of the explanation is the time-lag.

Keywords: vicarious religion; patriarchy; control; sexuality; gender roles; body; health; illness; time-lag

Chapter.  3681 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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