Does Masculinity Thwart Being Religious? An Examination of Older Men’s Religiousness

KR Remmes, Edward H Thompson* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Previous work shows a significant relationship between gender orientation and being religious in samples of college-age and adult men. Before entering later life, men with a feminine orientation have greater religious involvement than other men. In a sample of older men,from three Massachusetts counties, this study assessed the bearing of men's gender orientation and gender ideology on their religious involvement. Gender orientation more than masculinity ideology was found to be a reliable Predictor of older men's religiousness. Similar to studies of younger men, a feminine orientation was a significant determinant of the older men's religious participation, commitment, and intrinsic orientation. Older men who define sell in very masculine terms, however, engaged in a quest religiosity. When the masculinity ideology contains noms that Prescribe the virtues of a traditional masculinity and acquiring status, men's religious orientation was extrinsic (or means) oriented. These important findings are discussed in terms of how masculinity is it times a barrier to men's private devotion and at other times can be a trigger to questing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)521-532
Number of pages12
JournalJournal for the Scientific Study of Religion
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2002


  • Men and masculinities


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