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Body, Character and the Problem of Femaleness in Early Christian Discourse

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Exaggerating in the direction of truth so as to provoke historiographical thought, this article claims that formative Christianity was wholly an androcentric project. Oft-cited women-friendly texts (Luke, Galatians, Gospel of Thomas) are not exceptions to early Christian masculinised gender ideology. The article locates early Christian commitment to a piety of 'andreia' (manliness) within the similar hegemonic Graeco-Roman gender ideology. It concludes with some reflections on the effects ofa hegemonic ideology and raises questions on the possibility of emancipatory agency.

Affiliations: 1: Comparative Literature, Religion, and Film/Media Studies University of Alberta Edmonton, AB T6G 2E6, Canada, Guest Lecturer, Department of New Testament University of South Africa P O Box 392, Pretoria, 0003 Republic of South Africa


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