Women in God's Army: Gender and Equality in the Early Salvation Army

Front Cover
Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press, Mar 10, 2003 - History - 242 pages
0 Reviews

The early Salvation Army professed its commitment to sexual equality in ministry and leadership. In fact, its founding constitution proclaimed women had the right to preach and hold any office in the organization. But did they?

Women in God’s Army is the first study of its kind devoted to the critical analysis of this central claim. It traces the extent to which this egalitarian ideal was realized in the private and public lives of first- and second-generation female Salvationists in Britain and argues that the Salvation Army was found wanting in its overall commitment to women’s equality with men. Bold pronouncements were not matched by actual practice in the home or in public ministry.

Andrew Mark Eason traces the nature of these discrepancies, as well as the Victorian and evangelical factors that lay behind them. He demonstrates how Salvationists often assigned roles and responsibilities on the basis of gender rather than equality, and the ways in which these discriminatory practices were supported by a male-defined theology and authority. He views this story from a number of angles, including historical, gender and feminist theology, ensuring it will be of interest to a wide spectrum of readers. Salvationists themselves will appreciate the light it sheds on recent debates. Ultimately, however, anyone who wants to learn more about the human struggle for equality will find this book enlightening.

 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

1 Gender Stratification and the Sacred
1
The Salvation Armys Victorian and Evangelical Roots
11
Settled Views?
33
Male Salvationists and Women
63
A Public and Domestic Legacy
93
The Experiences of Female Officers
119
Epilogue
153
Notes
159
Bibliography
215
Index
237
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 17 - That the principle which regulates the existing social relations between the two sexes - the legal subordination of one sex to the other - is wrong in itself, and now one of the chief hindrances to human improvement; and that it ought to be replaced by a principle of perfect equality, admitting no power or privilege on the one side, nor disability on the other.
Page 12 - Help from without is often enfeebling in its effects, but help from within invariably invigorates. Whatever is done for men or classes, to a certain extent takes away the stimulus and necessity of doing for themselves: and where men are subjected to over-guidance and over-government, the inevitable tendency is to render them comparatively helpless.

About the author (2003)

Andrew Mark Eason is PhD candidate in Relgious Studies at the University of Galgary and is writing a dissertation on Salvation Army for sign missions from Britain to India and southern Africa.