Welcome to this new issue of Religion and Gender, published while editors, authors and readers, across continents and countries, are in various ways being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. While the pandemic has forced us to heighten our exploration of digital ways to collaborate, with positive outcomes, it is also impacting negatively on the academic labour market and conducting research and publishing, as well as on gender relations at work and home. As editors, we will be reflecting on the consequences of these changing dynamics for the journal. We are also looking forward to—perhaps in the near future—receiving manuscripts reflecting on religion, gender and COVID-19 related phenomena.
In the former editorial, we announced the news that in 2020 and 2021, Brill will publish all articles and reviews by authors affiliated to a Dutch institution as Open Access articles at no cost to the author. Now, we are happy to inform you that in 2020, Brill will publish all research and review articles by authors affiliated to a number of UK institutions in Open Access, at no cost to the author. These articles are sponsored by the library consortia JISC/SHEDL in a so-called Transformative Agreement, which also gives universities access to Brill’s full journal portfolio. Participating institutions include so far: University of Liverpool, University of Oxford, University of Manchester, University of Exeter, School of Oriental and African Studies, King’s College London, University of Cambridge, Durham University, University College London, Edinburgh Napier University, Glasgow Caledonian University, Heriot-Watt University, National Library of Scotland, National Museums of Scotland, Queen Margaret University, Robert Gordon University, University of Aberdeen, University of Abertay, University of Dundee, University of Edinburgh, University of Glasgow, University of St Andrews, University of Stirling, University of Strathclyde, University of the Highlands and Islands, and University of the West of Scotland. All articles by eligible authors which have already been published in 2020 will be converted to Open Access. More information can be found on the Brill website, at
This issue of Religion and Gender showcases three independent articles, a republished article from the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion, and six book reviews. The first article, entitled ‘A Man Is Only as Good as His Words!? Inqueeries on Jesus’ Gender’, is written by Benedikt Bauer. It provides a discussion of various types of thinking and reading Jesus’ gender. This is done through exploring four thematic foci on church history and recent discourses on Christian religiosity within society, including Muscular Christianity, Bridal Mysticism, Passion Piety and religious art/art using religious topoi. As such, the author conducts a queer and intersectional analysis of Jesus’ gender. The article was originally submitted to the special issue ‘Jesus, Religion, Gender’, guest edited by Jamie Pitts and Peter-Ben Smit, and published in the first issue of this volume. Due to a delay in processing the article, it could not be included in the special issue. The editors are happy to give it the attention it deserves and publish it as the first article of our current issue.
The second article is entitled ‘Defining and Enabling ‘Justice’ for Victims/Survivors of Domestic Violence and Abuse: The Views of Practitioners Working within Muslim, Jewish and Catholic Faiths’. The authors, Nadia Aghtaie, Natasha Mulvihill, Hilary Abrahams, and Marianne Hester, focus on practitioners and religious leaders’ conceptions of justice in response to domestic violence and abuse, and how Islamic, Jewish and Catholic religious tribunals may, or may not, offer ‘justice’ to victims. The third article, ‘Feminist Women’s Attitudes towards Feminist Men in the Canadian Atheist Movement’, by Jonathan Simmons, explores the relationship between feminism, masculinity and atheism. Specifically examining men’s adoption of the feminist label and women’s attitudes towards feminist men in the atheist movement, the findings shed light on the dilemmas of feminist men in atheist activism and contribute to understanding the gender dynamics of some atheist organisations. Fourth, in this issue we give space to a recent overview of the development of sexual harassment policies in the American Academy of Religion. Convinced that the problem of sexual intimidation and harassment still needs highlighting, the editors decided to republish ‘Living It Out: Herstory. #METOO. The Development of Sexual Harassment Policies in the American Academy of Religion’, written by Rita Nakashima Brock and Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite, and published in 2019 by the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion. We are grateful for the authors and journal’s permission to republish this piece.
Finally, the breadth of the scope of Religion and Gender and the many intersections that the journal seeks to explore become further visible in the book review section, which once again presents a long list of reviews of recently published books in our field. We hope that readers will enjoy this issue of Religion and Gender.
On behalf of our fellow editors,
Orit Avishai, Jeanette Jouili, Anne-Marie Korte, Karen Pechilis, Mariecke van den Berg, Eline Huygens and Jelle Wiering.