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Gender Stereotypes

(2,534 words)

Author(s): Grieser, Alexandra
Thematic Overview 1. Through prescriptions, myths, narratives and theologies, religions have a strong influence on imagined and real gender roles. ‘Gender’ is usually differentiated from ‘sex’ as denoting the social and cultural construction of the differences between male and female, while the latter refers to the biological differences. Images of the ‘real man,’ or of the ‘feminine’ or ‘unfeminine’ woman and her place in society, work, and family mark individual identities, social and political …


(1,346 words)

Author(s): Grieser, Alexandra
Thematic Overview 1. The use of the word ‘love’ in Western European discourse—from its casual meaning of “like,” to sexual “lovemaking,” to the much discussed “ideal of relationship”—is closely connected, in its culturally constructed meaning, with the religious history of the concept, for example in the mass media. Most often understood as a category of emotions for positively experienced, intensive associations free of any means-end relationships, today's concept of love mixes religious models o…


(4,169 words)

Author(s): Grieser, Alexandra
An Approximation: Sexuality in Myth 1. The relationships between sexuality and religion appear on many levels, and are reciprocal. On the one side, religions have a powerful effect on the meaning of sexuality and gender roles in a society (→ Gender Stereotypes), and on the other, sexuality is a key theme in religious systems of interpretation. Especially, the myths of the various religions illustrate the complex meaning of sexuality as a frontier between ‘nature’ and ‘culture,’ and their close connec…