Women, feminism, and religion

A short while ago I asked, Why is skepticism primarily a male thing?, and speculated on how traditional gender roles inclined women toward religiosity. There’s an interesting post on the feminist blog Pandagon, called “Feminism helps collapse religion,” that addresses some of the same questions. The comments on it are also interesting.

Still, there’s no convincing answer that I’ve come across. For example, in many situations (the US is an exception in this regard), women tend to be more politically conservative. French left-wingers, for example, refused to support votes for women until after World War II, because it was clear that women would give Catholic reactionaries an advantage. Religiosity has a strong correlation with political conservatism, but I’m damned if I can see if in such cases, women are more religious because they are more conservative, the other way around, if both religiosity and religion causally depend on a third factor such as lack of power, if both depend on a third factor I’m overlooking, or whatever.

About Taner Edis

Professor of physics at Truman State University