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Assessing the Impact of Religion on Gender Status


  • Jennifer Olmsted


In an article published in Economic Development and Cultural Change , Shoshona Grossbard-Shechtman and Shoshona Neuman "offer clues on how religion affects women's value of time in marriage." Using data from Israel, they argue that they are able to measure differences in the value of women's time in marriage among Christians, Muslims, and Jews. Unfortunately their article contains a number of erroneous statements concerning the three religions on which they focus. They provide little scriptural support for their conclusions, and ignore the particularities of the local religious practices in Israel. As such, their theoretical argument is flawed. In addition, their interpretation of their results and their treatment of religion as a dummy variable are rather problematic. In this comment I challenge their discussion of how both scripture and local practice define the three religions, as well as problematizing and reinterpreting the authors' empirical results.

Suggested Citation

  • Jennifer Olmsted, 2002. "Assessing the Impact of Religion on Gender Status," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(3), pages 99-111.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:femeco:v:8:y:2002:i:3:p:99-111
    DOI: 10.1080/13545700210166928

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Grossbard-Shechtman, Shoshana & Neuman, Shoshana, 1998. "The Extra Burden of Moslem Wives: Clues from Israeli Women's Labor Supply," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 46(3), pages 491-517, April.
    2. Sondra Hale, 1995. "Gender and economics; Islam and Polygamy - a question of causality," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 1(2), pages 67-79.
    3. Grossbard-Shechtman, Shoshana Amyra & Neuman, Shoshana, 1988. "Women's Labor Supply and Marital Choice," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(6), pages 1294-1302, December.
    4. Robert Cherry, 1998. "Rational Choice and the Price of Marriage," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(1), pages 27-49.
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    Religion; Marriage; Labor; Islam; Orientalism;


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