Welcome to this new volume and issue of Religion and Gender, published while all of us, editors, authors and readers, find ourselves in turbulent and discomforting times due to the COVID-19 pandemic. How the pandemic will affect our journal in the long term remains to be seen, in terms of the number of submissions we receive and the diversity among submitting authors. Needless to say, however, we will pay close attention to, and will reflect on, possible changing dynamics.
Launched in 2011, Religion and Gender over the past nine years has established itself as the leading journal for the study of gender and religion from inter- and transdisciplinary perspectives. In the first issue of last year, we announced that as from 2019 on, Religion and Gender would be published by Brill, a leading international academic publisher with a strong reputation in the Humanities and Social Sciences, in collaboration with the International Association for the study of Religion and Gender (IARG). As a consequence, in 2019 we published our first volume successfully with Brill, in collaboration with Laura Morris, Acquisitions Editor for Religious Studies, and Dieuwertje Kooij, Production Editor Journals of TAT Zetwerk. We thank Laura and Dieuwertje for their dedicated work in supporting and publishing our journal. As emphasised in our announcement last year, although Religion and Gender now operates as a subscription-based journal, together with Brill, we continue to follow developments in the world of academic publishing and to explore opportunities to run on an open access basis. An illustration of a temporary open access initiative is the Transformative Agreement, which will be introduced below.
In this editorial introduction, we will first announce changes in Religion and Gender’s editorial team and Editorial Advisory Board. Secondly, we convey news about the Transformative Agreement, which refers to open access publication of contributions of authors affiliated to Dutch institutions during 2020 and 2021.
A first announcement to make is that we are happy to say that two new colleagues have joined the editorial team as senior editors from Spring 2020. The first is Orit Avishai, Professor of Sociology at Fordham University, and the second is Karen Pechilis, Professor of Comparative Religion at Drew University. We warmly welcome Orit and Karen and are looking forward to our collaboration. We trust that the journal will benefit greatly from their in-depth and diverse expertise in gender and sexuality studies, religious studies, feminist theory, sociology, Jewish studies, Asian religions, interpretive history, translation, and cultural analysis. Our Editorial Advisory Board has been strengthened by two new members as well. We are happy to be able to rely on the networks and expertise of Margreet van Es (Utrecht University) and Line Nyhagen (Loughborough University), and look forward similarly to working with them. Our editorial team has been strengthened by Eline Huygens, PhD student at the Centre for Research on Culture and Gender at Ghent University, who will be sharing the task of book editing together with Jelle Wiering, PhD student at the University of Groningen. Those interested in contributing a book review can find a list of available titles at
The editorial team unfortunately also had to say goodbye to two members who have now terminated their service. Over the years, Adriaan van Klinken, who has been involved with the journal from the start, first as managing editor and the last four years as executive editor, played a crucial role in setting up the journal, discussions about the journal’s content and editorial strategy, and steering the journal into new directions. Fortunately, Adriaan moved to the Editorial Advisory Board, which means that Religion and Gender is still able to draw from his expertise. An Van Raemdonck, who served as book review editor and contributed to discussions within the team at all levels for many years, had also moved on from the journal. We are grateful for the enthusiastic and dedicated work of Adriaan and An in developing Religion and Gender into the successful journal it now is.
Secondly, we are happy to be able to convey the news that in 2020 and 2021, Brill will publish all articles and reviews by authors affiliated to a Dutch institution in open access at no cost to the author. These articles are sponsored by the Dutch university library consortium UKB in a so-called Transformative Agreement, which also gives universities access to Brill’s full journal portfolio. Participating institutions include: University of Amsterdam, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, University of Groningen, Radboud University Nijmegen, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Tilburg University, Utrecht University, Wageningen University and Leiden University. This is very positive news for authors affiliated to a Dutch institution given the fact that Open Access articles are downloaded on average 25 % more often, are cited more often, and are cited more quickly upon publication. The author retains copyright and is encouraged to share the article widely across networks and databases relevant to their field. Moreover, from the perspective of Religion and Gender, this agreement has the potential to be very advantageous for the journal’s visibility. Please do share this news with those for whom it might be useful, particularly with eligible authors and guest editors. More information can be found on the Brill website, at
In concluding this editorial introduction, we hope readers will enjoy this issue of Religion and Gender, showcasing the special issue ‘Jesus, Religion, Gender’, guest edited by Jamie Pitts (Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, Elkhart, USA) and Peter-Ben Smit (Vrije Universiteit (Amsterdam), University of Bern, Utrecht University, University of Pretoria).
On behalf of our fellow editors,
Orit Avishai, Sarah Bracke, Jeanette Jouili, Anne-Marie Korte, Karen Pechilis, Mariecke van den Berg, Jelle Wiering and Eline Huygens.