Christian Manliness For Women? Contradictions of Christian youth organization in early 20th-century Sweden

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Evangelical revivalism attracted large numbers of young adherents in early 20th-century Sweden. In this article we discuss what happened when Christian youth societies for men and women merged into mixed societies. The decline of the ideal of the single-sex youth society meant that a decidedly female form of religious organization disappeared. We argue, however, that the change also entailed cautious challenges to established notions of gender. First, a discourse was created in which notions of manliness were placed in the centre, and women, to some extent, were seen as embodying masculinity. Secondly, even though central actors had objections towards a direct female leadership of men, female board members were accepted from the start in local societies. The patriarchal gender order remained, but in some ways the mixed Christian youth organization gave way to an exercise in partnership.


  • Elin Malmer
  • Erik Sidenvall
Enheter & grupper

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Filosofi, etik och religion


Sidor (från-till)394-413
TidskriftScandinavian Journal of History
Utgåva nummer4
StatusPublished - 2009
Peer review utfördJa