Field to Table: Katie McIntyre (Associate Professor, Department of Gender and Women’s Studies)

Protestantism, Girls’ Sports, and Nationalism in 1920s and 1930s Mexico

  • Date: December 10, 2021
  • Time: 3:00 PM EST
  • Location: This event was on Zoom and has concluded.


From their emphasis on patriotic holidays, support for women’s suffrage, sports programming, and close ties to the Secretaría de Educación Pública (SEP), Protestant schools closely aligned their mission with Mexico’s postrevolutionary nationalist and anticlerical goals. An examination of physical education at girls’ schools provides transnational insight into Protestant women’s roles in postrevolutionary Mexico. Suffrage, temperance, girls’ educational, recreational, and labor opportunities, and social work were all areas that Methodist women’s organizations focused. Founded in the 1870s and 1880s, Methodist girls’ school became successful mobilizing structures for women’s rights following the 1910 Mexican Revolution. Through the lens of Methodist education, this paper examines the intersection of transnational suffrage movements, sports, revolutionary nationalism, and new debates about the role of Protestantism in Mexico. In particular, this paper explores girls’ basketball organizing from the consolidation of the Mexican Revolution in 1920 through the close of the Cárdenas presidency in 1940, focusing on three Methodist schools: Normal Metodista de Señoritas in Puebla, Hijas de Allende in Pachuca, Hidalgo, and Colegio Juárez in Guanajuato. This presentation is a partial chapter draft from my manuscript in progress, “Protestant Women and Political Activism in Mexico, 1900-1955”.