Where Should You Go?: First read chapter 8 in your textbook(kimmel the gendered society). Then, I would like you to attend the services of a religious or spiritual space that is new, unusual or infrequent to you. For example, if you do not identity with organized religion, then any religious experience would fit. If you are Methodist, you might try an Episcopal church or if you are really adventurous a Buddhist temple. If you are extremely religious, maybe try a nondenominational church or a meditational room.
Another option, if the opportunity presents itself, is to sit in on a wedding. So much of the religious experience is symbolic and habitual that it is hard to observe what we are very used to. The goal of this visit is to make the religious experience – through a service/wedding – new and unusual again so that gender can be observed more clearly.
What Should You Observe?: Using chapter 8 as inspiration, observe the way gender is represented in the religious or spiritual spaces you visited. What expectations for masculinity and femininity are made in these spaces? What symbols or messages allow you to makes these judgments? Reflect upon how your observations compare and contrast to your own religious (or lack of religious) experiences? Do you believe that religion plays a strong role in defining what it means to be a man and women in our society?
What Should You Write About?: Write a 2 page essay describing what messages were revealed about being masculine or feminine in the religious/spiritual spaces you visited. First, describe the religious/spiritual space you visited. What emerged for you as interesting? Second, describe the ways that some of the symbols and rituals were gendered.
What messages did they reveal about how a man and women should behave? Draw upon chapter 8 and link some of its major points to what you observed. Finally, discuss your own religious experiences (or lack thereof) and the ways it helped contribute to your understanding of what it means to be a male or female.
What Should You Hand In?: Hand in a two page essay WITH proof that you visited a religious or spiritual space.
Last Updated on February 10, 2019 by EssayPro