Ordaining Women by Mark Chaves
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Ordaining Women
By Mark Chaves

Ordaining Women

Culture and Conflict in Religious Organizations New edition

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Format: Paperback

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Ordaining Women by Mark Chaves

Book Description

Why does a denomination prohibiting women clergy support parishes run by women? Why does a denomination opt to ordain women when there are few women seeking to join that clergy? And why have some denominations ordained women so much earlier than others? In an examination of the complex relationship among religion, social forces, and organizational structure, this book draws examples and data from over 100 Christian denominations to explore the meaning of institutional rules about women's ordination. Combining historical and sociological perspectives, Mark Chaves shows that formal institutional rules about ordination often diverge from the actual roles of women and are best understood as symbolic gestures in favour of, or in opposition to gender equality. The book concludes that external pressures from the women's movement and ecumenical pressure expressed through interdenominational organizations such as the National Council of Churches influence ordination practices. At the same time, internal factors such as having a source of religious authority that is considered superior to modern principles of equal rights also explain why some denominations ordain women much earlier than others. Surprisingly, "the Bible forbids it" does not account for policies even among fundamentalists and other biblical inerrantists. Chaves historical and comparative approach offers an analysis of how the internal denominational debates have changed over time, becoming more frequent, more politicized, and more contentious. The delineation of forces affecting debates and policies about women's ordination makes this book a contribution to our understanding of religious organizations and of gender equality.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780674641464
ISBN-10: 0674641469
Format: Paperback
(210mm x 140mm x 17mm)
Pages: 249
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 31-Mar-1999
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions...

Books By Author Mark Chaves

American Religion by Mark Chaves American Religion, Paperback (September 2013)

Presents the information about religious trends in the United States, in a succinct and accessible manner. This book provides essential information about key developments in American religion since 1972, and is the first major resource of its kind to appear in more than two decades.

Congregations in America by Mark Chaves Congregations in America, Hardback (June 2004)

Mark Chaves examines the activities and concerns of the over 300,000 religious congregations in the US. He finds that far from being obsessed with political and social issues, most concentrate on ritual, knowledge and beauty, through the cultural activities of worship, religious education and the arts.

» View all books by Mark Chaves


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Author Biography - Mark Chaves

Mark Chaves is Professor of Professor of Sociology, Religion, and Divinity at Duke University.

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American Religion by Mark Chaves
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