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Women of “manly faith”

An important feminist principle is to self-define womanhood rather than defining woman according to men. For example, women whose primary self-understanding is as wife, mother or widow are defined by their relationships to men; sister and daughter are often not very far behind. If women are described positively in masculine […]

“Mother” in the Reformation

I noted after reading Cheryl Exum’s work on Deborah that the Old Testament’s conception of motherhood is broader than family or biological ties. Though the Reformation elevated and celebrated biological motherhood, there were some women who claimed a larger title of mother. Katharina Schütz Zell (KSZ) was one such woman […]

Reformation women: opportunities

One of Kirsi Stjerna’s conclusions in Women and the Reformation is that “more than any other factor, gender determined a woman’s ability and avenues to respond to the Reformation.” However, their responses were not uniform and she stresses that it would be a mistake to see women as responding en […]