Advertisement

Review of Religious Research

, Volume 59, Issue 4, pp 547–556 | Cite as

Gendered Religiosity

  • Landon Schnabel
Research Note

Abstract

This study uses measures of cognitive and expressive aspects of gender as a social identity from the General Social Survey to examine whether and how they relate to religiosity. I find that religiosity is clearly gendered, but in different ways for women and men. Consistent with the feminine-typing of religion in the Christian-majority context of the United States, gender expression is linked with more religiousness among women but not men. Consistent with religion being a sometimes patriarchal institution, those with more pride in being men are more religious. I conclude that religiosity is gendered, that degendering and secularization processes could go hand-in-hand, and that future research on gender differences in religiosity should further examine variation among women and among men.

Keywords

Gender Religion Social Identity 

Notes

Acknowledgements

I am grateful to the four anonymous reviewers for their helpful feedback.

References

  1. Avishai, Orit. 2016. Theorizing Gender from religion cases: Agency, feminist activism, and masculinity. Sociology of Religion 77 (3): 261–279.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Avishai, Orit, Afshan Jafar, and Rachel Rinaldo. 2015. A gender lens on religion. Gender and Society 29 (1): 5–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bartkowski, John P., and Jen’nan Ghazal Read. 2003. Veiled submission: Gender, power, and identity among evangelical and muslim women in the United States. Qualitative Sociology 26 (1): 71–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bem, Sandra L. 1974. The measurement of psychological androgyny. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 42 (2): 1S5–1S162.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Charlton, Joy C. 2015. Revisiting gender and religion. Review of Religious Research 57 (3): 331–339.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Collett, Jessica L., and Omar Lizardo. 2009. A power-control theory of gender and religiosity. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 48 (2): 213–231.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cornwall, Marie. 2009. Reifying sex difference isn’t the answer: Gendering processes, risk, and religiosity. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 48 (2): 252–255.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Francis, Leslie J., and Carolyn Wilcox. 1996. Religion and gender orientation. Personality and Individual Differences 20 (I): 119–121.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Francis, Leslie J., and Carolyn Wilcox. 1998. Religiosity and femininity: Do women really hold a more positive attitude toward christianity? Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 37 (3): 462–469.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Freese, Jeremy. 2004. Risk preferences and gender differences in religiousness: Evidence from the world values survey. Review of Religious Research 46 (1): 88–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hackett, Conrad, Caryle Murphy, and David McClendon. 2016. The gender gap in religion around the world. Washington, D.C.: Pew Research Center.Google Scholar
  12. Hoffmann, John P., and John P. Bartkowski. 2008. Gender, religious tradition, and biblical literalism. Social Forces 86 (3): 1245–1272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Irby, Courtney Ann. 2014. Dating in light of christ: Young evangelicals negotiating gender in the context of religious and secular American culture. Sociology of Religion 75 (2): 260–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Levitt, Mairi. 1995. Sexual identity and religious socialization. British Journal of Sociology 46 (3): 529–536.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Lorber, Judith. 2000. Using gender to undo gender: A feminist degendering movement. Feminist Theory 1 (1): 79–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lummis, Adair T. 1999. Gender and religion. In Handbook of the sociology of gender, ed. Janet Saltzman Chafetz. New York: Plenum.Google Scholar
  17. Lummis, Adair T. 2004. A research note: Real men and church participation. Review of Religious Research 45 (4): 404–414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Miller, Alan S., and Rodney Stark. 2002. Gender and religiousness: Can socialization explanations be saved? American Journal of Sociology 107 (6): 1399–1423.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Schnabel, Landon. 2015. How religious are American women and men? Gender differences and similarities. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 54 (3): 616–622.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Schnabel, Landon. 2016a. Gender and homosexuality attitudes across religious groups from the 1970s to 2014: Similarity, distinction, and adaptation. Social Science Research 55 (1): 31–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Schnabel, Landon. 2016b. Religion and gender equality worldwide: A country-level analysis. Social Indicators Research 129 (2): 893–907.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Schnabel, Landon. 2016c. The gender pray gap: Wage labor and the religiosity of high-earning women and men. Gender and Society 30 (4): 643–669.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Sherkat, Darren E. 2002. Sexuality and religious commitment in the United States: An empirical examination. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 41 (2): 313–323.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Sherkat, Darren E. 2017. Sexuality and religious commitment revisited: Exploring the religious commitments of sexual minorities from 1991–2014. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 55: 756.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Steensland, Brian, et al. 2000. The measure of American religion: Toward improving the state of the art. Social Forces 79 (1): 291–318.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Sullins, D.Paul. 2006. Gender and religion: Deconstructing universality, constructing complexity. American Journal of Sociology 112 (3): 838–880.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Sumerau, J.E. 2012. ‘That’s what a man is supposed to do’: Compensatory manhood acts in an LGBT Christian Church. Gender and Society 26 (3): 461–487.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Sumerau, J.E., Ryan T. Cragun, and Lain A.B. Mathers. 2016. Contemporary religion and the cisgendering of reality. Social Currents 3 (3): 293–311.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Tajfel, Henri. 1981. Human groups and social categories. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  30. Thompson, Edward H. 1991. Beneath the status characteristic: Gender variations in religiousness. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 30 (4): 381–394.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Thompson, Edward H., and Kathryn R. Remmes. 2002. Does masculinity thwart being religious? An examination of older men’s religiousness. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 41 (3): 521–532.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. West, Candace, and Don H. Zimmerman. 1987. Doing gender. Gender and Society 1 (2): 125–151.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Wilcox, W.Bradford. 2004. Soft Patriarchs, New Men. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Religious Research Association, Inc. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyIndiana UniversityBloomingtonUSA

Personalised recommendations