Journal Article

The Gendered Organization of an Australian Anglican Parish*

Julie Manville

in Sociology of Religion

Published on behalf of Association for the Sociology of Religion

Volume 58, issue 1, pages 25-38
Published in print January 1997 | ISSN: 1069-4404
Published online January 1997 | e-ISSN: 1759-8818 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3712104
The Gendered Organization of an Australian Anglican Parish*

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This paper uses Acker's theory of gendered organizations to identify the processes involved in the construction of the male and female domains in an Australian Anglican parish. Participant-observation in the parish provided a unique insight into the production of these domains. Though the parishioners lack theological agreement on gender ideologies they have a consensus on the essential opposition of male and female. Men are decision-makers and leaders whereas women are nurturers, carers, and servers. A permeable boundary exists in the parish social organization between the male and female domains; some women are allowed to enter the male domain of parish administration if they are perceived as having male attributes. An examination of the parish social organization (parish administration and small groups), and of the interactions between men and women, illustrates the gendered nature of social processes in the parish. These interactions create and reinforce the subordination of women to men.

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Subjects: Religion ; Sociology of Religion

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