Evangelical Christianity and Patriarchal Family Practices among Roma in Post-Socialist Bulgaria


Dissertation Fellowships in East European Studies




This dissertation asks whether, when, and how the adoption of Evangelical Christianity by Roma in post-socialist Bulgaria has impacted the status and engagement of Roma women in their families, communities, and the larger society. The project examines the dynamic interplay among outside religious actors (foreign and Bulgarian) on the one hand, and members of local Roma communities that vary in the extent of their marginalization and in the degree of their adherence to traditional patriarchal attitudes and practices, on the other hand. It argues that while participation in Evangelical churches enhances women’s status in more integrated Roma communities, it has a minimal impact in the most marginalized communities.