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Religions, Volume 11, Issue 2 (February 2020) – 48 articles
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Cover Story (view full-size image) The normative discourse widely shared in mainstream Sikhism affirms the equality between man and [...] Read more. The normative discourse widely shared in mainstream Sikhism affirms the equality between man and woman and the same possibility to manifest devotion through every kind of seva (selfless social service in “gurdwaras”, the Sikh temples). However, empirical observation has shown a different picture, as there is a clear division of tasks that implicitly subtends a gender-based hierarchy. This relational structure is challenged by intergenerational tensions, especially by young women born or raised in Italy, who may want to develop a different Sikh identity, considered compatible also with the Italian social and cultural context. In this initial process of collective identity definition and of agency, the female participation in the religious seva within gurdwaras is identified as the tool for change of power relations that cross genders and generations. View this paper