Gender Religion and Power


Humboldt University Berlin 
Mondays 18:00-20:00 (CEST) / 19:00-21:00 (GMT+3)
14 WEEKS (12.04.21 - 12.07.21)


Using feminist and interdisciplinary approaches, the course examines the gendered and power dimensions of religion, religiosity, and secularism. It offers students to engage in current debates about gender and religion and to explore women’s religious lives in Abrahamic religions. Because of the complex nature of gendered experiences, intersectionality is used as the primary analytical framework. The course discusses the ways in which religious women locate their religiosity, shape their lives, negotiate their agency. The course introduces students to current feminist scholarship in gender and religion through various case studies focusing on the engagement with power and religious women’s agency.


Learning Aims

• Introduce various theoretical and methodological approaches to the intersecting studies of religion, gender, feminism, and power dimensions.

• Critically engage and analyse the ways in which intersecting relations and activities of gender and religion operate in women’s lives at the individual, community, and institutional level.

• Discuss the ways in which power dynamics influence the gendered religious experience in the private and public domain.

Upon the successful completion of the course students will be able to:

• Identify various feminist and interdisciplinary approaches to discuss gender within the religious context.

• Compare liberal feminists’, feminist theologians’, religious feminists’ approaches to women’s religiosity and agency.

• Apply the theory of intersectionality for the analysis of power dynamics embedded in the religious context.


A full outline of the course syllabus can be found here.  



Viktoria Lavriniuk is a PhD candidate, Institute of Feminist and Gender Studies at the University of Ottawa, Canada. She holds a master’s degree in economics and management from the Belarusian State Economics University. Before entering academia, Viktoria was a part of the United Nations Population Fund team on promoting gender-sensitive agenda and gender mainstreaming practices in policies and programs in Belarus. Her main research interest lies in the intersection of gender and religion from the postcolonial perspective, and precisely she is interested in the ways in which women’s religiosity can be translated into liberatory practices and by this challenge kyriarchal power of the Church.

This seminar is hosted by Humboldt University Berlin, funded and co-organized by the Academic Freedom Network as part of the Berlin Center for Global Engagement and the Berlin University Alliance. The Academic Freedom Network was established by the partnership of the Humboldt University Berlin, Freie University Berlin, Academics in Solidarity at FU-Berlin, Off-University, Einstein Fellows Research Group at HU-Berlin, and The New University in Exile Consortium, The New School, NY, USA.