Feminization of the Clergy in America

Overview

Feminization is said to occur when women enter any given occupation in substantial numbers, and ostensibly leads to such dynamics as sex-segregation, reduced opportunities for men, and depressed wages and diminished prestige for the occupation as a whole. Spanning more than 70 years, Paula Nesbitt's study of feminization concentrates on the Episcopal Church and the Unitarian Universalist Association, utilizing both statistical results and interviews to compare occupational patterns prior and subsequent to the ...

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Feminization of the Clergy in America

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Overview

Feminization is said to occur when women enter any given occupation in substantial numbers, and ostensibly leads to such dynamics as sex-segregation, reduced opportunities for men, and depressed wages and diminished prestige for the occupation as a whole. Spanning more than 70 years, Paula Nesbitt's study of feminization concentrates on the Episcopal Church and the Unitarian Universalist Association, utilizing both statistical results and interviews to compare occupational patterns prior and subsequent to the large influx of women clergy. Among her findings, the author discovers that a decline in men's opportunities is evident before the 1970s, preceding the great influx of women over the last two decades. She also finds that increases in the number of women ordained reduced occupational prospects for other women, but enhanced those for men, thus contradicting the popular myth that women in the workplace are responsible for occupational decline.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A significant contribution to the discipline. The author's focus on organizational behavior moves beyond the realm of attitudinal surveys administered at one point in time. Her use of both history and biography is a good illustration of the 'sociological imagination' advocated by the late C. Wright Mills."—Ruth A. Wallace, George Washington University
Booknews
Concentrating on the Episcopal Church and the Unitarian Universalist Association over the past 70 years, draws on both statistics and interviews to compare occupational patterns in churches before and after the large influx of women clergy. In contrast to popular impressions, finds that men's opportunities were declining before 1970 and women's influx, and that increases in the number of women ordained reduced the prospects for other women but enhanced those for men. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195106862
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 4/28/1997
  • Pages: 304
  • Lexile: 1850L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.25 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.95 (d)

Meet the Author

Iliff School of Theology
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Table of Contents

Introduction 3
1 Tradition or Transformation: Women's Struggle over Religious Authority and Leadership 9
2 Clergy in Two Religious Organizations 29
3 Ordination and Entry Jobs: Critical Criteria 41
4 The Second Job: Key to the Career Path 57
5 Clergy Careers over Time: A 60-Year Portrait 73
6 Decline and Fall of the Young Male Cleric 90
7 Feminization and Backlash 107
8 Structural Change in the Ministry 135
9 Clergy Feminization: Controlled Labor or Liberationist Change? 161
App. A Clergy Job Titles Aggregated by Job Level 178
App. B Demographic Variables 186
App. C Mean (average) Career Trajectory 190
Notes 191
Bibliography 245
Index 269
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