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Religion and Gender in the Developing World: Faith-based Organizations and Feminism in India

Religion and Gender in the Developing World: Faith-based Organizations and Feminism in India
Tamsin Bradley

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Faith-based development organizations have become a central part of the lives of the women of rural Rajasthan, and have come to represent an important aspect of both individual and collective identities. And yet, religious teachings continue to be used to exclude women from public decision making forums and render them vulnerable to increasing levels of domestic violence. In a unique multi-disciplinary approach, combining a range of subjects, particularly gender studies, Bradley provides a unique study of the contradictory and complex role of development organisations and faith organizations in the lives of women in rural Rajasthan. This book will be of interest to students, researchers and policy makers involved in various fields, including those of Development Studies, Religion, Gender Studies and Social Anthropology.

Table of Contents


Part I: Mainstreaming Religion and Gender in Development
Chapter 1: Reviewing the Links between Religion, Gender and Development
Chapter 2: Understanding Global Development through Religion and Gender
Chapter 3: Gender, Mothering and Development: Case Studies of Three Hindu Trans-national Movements

Part II: Faith-based Organizations and Dialogues in Development
Chapter 4: What is a Faith-Based Organization?
Chapter 5: Can Compassion bring Results? Reflections on the Work of an Intermediary Faith-Based Organization
Chapter 6: Competing Visions of Development: The Story of a Faith-Based Partnership
Chapter 7: Gender, Gandhi and Community Organizations

Part III: Religion as Resource
Chapter 8: Physical Religious Spaces in the Lives of Rajasthani Village Women: The Ethnographic Study and Practice of Religion in Development
Chapter 9: Positioning Religion in Research and Activism to End Domestic Violence in Rajasthan
Chapter 10: Puja as One Dimension of a Sensitive, Relational Approach to Community Health Care Provision


Author Info

Tamsin Bradley is Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology at London Metropolitan University. She is the author of 'Challenging the NGOs: Women and Western Dialogues in India' (I.B.Tauris, 2006).


This volume through its focus on gender fills an obvious gap in the burgeoning literature on religion and international development. Here, Tamsin Bradley combines new ethnographic research with an innovative interdisciplinary approach to the study of how religion and development inter-relate. She explores the operation of various faith-based and secular organizations, critically reflecting on the extent to which they engage with the cultural and religious lives of those they seek to help. This volume will make a significant contribution to the work of many scholars from a wide range of disciplines.
– Professor Jeffery Haynes, Associate Head of Research and Postgraduate Studies, Faculty of Law, Governance and International Relations, London Metropolitan University

Here, Tamsin Bradley argues that it is important to mainstream not only gender analysis but also considerations of religion within contemporary development theory and practice. This argument is timely and important, and corresponds with recent shifts in both academic research and public policy that recognizes the crucial roles that religion plays in developing countries. However, the gender implications of the religion-development nexus have been given less attention and it is this aspect that Bradley brings to the fore. This interdisciplinary book provides a sensitive and well-informed analysis, drawing on years of ethnographic research, of the complex relationships between gender, religion and development.
– Dr Emma Tomalin, Senior Lecturer in Religious Studies, Department of Theology and Religious Studies, University of Leeds

The idea of publishing a volume on gender and religion in the developing world is extremely welcome, but this book does much more than just fill a gap: Tamsin Bradley's own experience, both in India and elsewhere, her analytical powers and her writing capabilities ensure comprehensive and insightful coverage and enable work on this broad area to move forward.
– Dr Lynne Brydon, Head of the School of History and Cultures, University of Birmingham, and lead author of Adjusting Society: The World Bank, the IMF and Ghana

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: Tauris Academic Studies
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.
Series: Library of Development Studies

ISBN: 9781848854277
Publication Date: 07 Dec 2010
Number of Pages: 272
Height: 216
Width: 134

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