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The Columbia Guide to Religion in American History$
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Paul Harvey and Edward Blum

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780231140201

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231140201.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 19 September 2021

Religion, Gender, and Sexuality

Religion, Gender, and Sexuality

Chapter:
(p.188) 9. Religion, Gender, and Sexuality
Source:
The Columbia Guide to Religion in American History
Author(s):

Anthony Michael Petro

Publisher:
Columbia University Press
DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231140201.003.0010

This chapter examines how issues of gender and sexuality are intertwined with religious history in America. Growing out of church history, the study of American religion through the 1970s largely focused on the intellectual history of Protestantism. Scholars examined theological writings authored almost exclusively by men, while they often overlooked how women not only shaped this religious thought, but also participated in devotional activities of their own. Since the 1980s, new studies devoted to analyzing the construction of gender and the history of sexuality in American religion have supplemented, extended, and even challenged the history of religious women. These three areas of analytic focus—women, gender, and sexuality—have substantially revised how we think about religion in America. This chapter traces the development of these categories out of women's history and highlights key themes from the colonial and revolutionary periods up to the nineteenth century. It also looks at modernizing women and masculine religion at the turn of the twentieth century and concludes by assessing the status of women in the modern era.

Keywords:   gender, sexuality, religious history, America, religion, Protestantism, women, sex, religious women, masculine religion

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