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Processes of gender democratization in evangelical missions: the case of the Norwegian Missionary Society
journal contributionposted on 27.10.2011, 13:24 authored by Line NyhagenLine Nyhagen
In 1904 women were granted voting and representational rights in the Norwegian Missionary Society. A number of factors contributed to the integration of women in the national mission organization and the formal gender democratization that resulted from it. This article discusses some of the historical developments towards the gradual inclusion of women in mission management, with a view towards establishing the degree to which this process resulted from pressures from mission women themselves. The article invalidates the myth that Norwegian missionary women in toto have been conservative when it comes to the development of women's liberation in Norway, and shows that reality was in fact more complex, as the missionary movement was embraced by women and men with differing views towards women's roles. The contradiction between women's public humility and meekness on the one hand, and a more hidden "desire for power and authority" on the other, was instrumental in the gradual integration of women into mission management.
- Social Sciences
- Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies