Christian Patriarchy and the Liberation of Eve
Sims, Jennifer Emily
Christian Patriarchy is a set of beliefs held by many conservative Christians that outlines gender roles based on a literal interpretation of scripture. These gender roles, also referred to as biblical manhood and biblical womanhood, dictate the hierarchy of authority where Christ is the head of the household, the husband is the head of the wife. Children are primed at a very young age to demonstrate the tenets of biblical manhood and biblical womanhood, but for young girls, their paths are strictly laid out for them to marry, birth many Godly children, and serve their husbands. The fundamentalist reading of Genesis 2-3 is used to justify female submission via Eve’s creation and subsequent role in the Fall of Humanity. This evangelical interpretation uses Genesis 2-3 as the foundational text to first justify women as subordinate based on creation order, and secondly justify women’s submission on Eve’s role in the Fall of Humanity. By using biblical interpretations to subordinate the woman’s position vis-à-vis her husband, women in these conservative Christian homes are locked into this role with little chance to follow a different path, and are often dependent on a dominant male figure for survival. This thesis shall first give a background of Christian Patriarchy as well as the Quiverfull movement. Next I explore the world of young girls who escaped the movement, and their individual stories of Patriarchy. Lastly, I will assert that women can be religious and equal based on an alternative reading of the central biblical texts, Genesis 2-3. Biblical text referenced herein will be from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) as well as the King James Version (KJV)
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