ABSTRACT: This article employs a content analysis of the Adventist Review to explore Seventh-day Adventist denominational change and concomitant delimitation of women's roles and expectations in the denomination. It uses Weber's theory of the religion of non-privileged classes in order to consider denominational change and attendant advocation of specific gender ideals and proscriptions for Adventist women. The paper finds that early in its history Adventism defined itself in opposition to secular society, and that in the context of this definition by distinction, Adventist women were encouraged to assume positions of public religious responsibility not available to them in secular society. Following the turn of the century and especially during the 1950s and 1960s, as Adventist culture adopted an accommodating response to other denominations and secular society, the Review promoted conventional secular notions of gender appropriate activity, relegating men to the "bread-winner" role and discouraging women from engaging in wage labor, or religious activity outside of the domestic sphere. As suggested by Weber's theory of religion of non-privileged classes, examination of the Adventist Review illustrates the way in which Adventist leadership shifted from advocating ideals inconsistent with those promulgated in the wider society, when Adventist culture most emphasized its distinction, only to later embrace secular expectations of gender when the denomination adopted a more accommodating response to other denominations and secular society.
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