Female exclusion from religious roles: a cross-cultural test of competing explanations

Social Forces Published In Pages: 79-98
By Welch, Michael R.


This article examines three theories regarding the lack of participation by women in community religious roles. Empirical analysis suggests that only resource theory has predictive power. Most clearly it suggests that women are more likely to be shamans in societies in which they are highly influential in kin networks but maintain minimal control of property. Neither gynephobia nor the presence of sex-differentiated social spheres appears associated with the prohibition of women’s participation in religious roles.

Documents and Hypotheses Filed By:Kate Cummings Amelia Piazza