Chapter 17 Introduction: Feminist Approaches within the Sociology of Religion

In: Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion, Volume 31
Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor
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In the struggle for equality and rights for women, feminist scholarship developed methodological frameworks that can be used to challenge the marginality of any ‘othered’ group in society, who may be marginalised on account of ethnicity, gender, sexuality, religion, or age. Whereas early feminism was critiqued as being a White, Western, middle class movement, it evolved (and continues to evolve) into a philosophical paradigm that is inclusive of the diverse ways of being a woman and of the diverse ways of being human. Feminist research approaches encapsulate a diversity of ways of doing research that challenge accepted intellectual norms, disciplinary silos and often encapsulate activism within research. These methods are usually reflective and participatory. In this special section we explore how a multiplicity of feminist approaches are applied within the sociology of religion. Through a diverse clutch of papers, we explore new frontiers that are being opened within the sociology of religion as a result of feminist methodological approaches and intellectual postionings.

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