The Revolt of the Widows: The Social World of the Apocryphal Acts

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No child of this century, women’s liber­ation existed as a Christian movement in the 2nd century. In this first study of the social context that produced the Apocryphal Acts, Stevan L. Davies con­tends that women wrote the Acts and that the Acts appear to have been a striving by Christian women for both a mode of self-expression and a way to preach rebellion for the sake of sexual continence.” These early rebels called widows because they left their husbands for the church refused absolute subservience to the male hierarchy of the church.

 

The three parts of Davies’s study in­clude an investigation of the magical world view of late 2nd-century Christen­dom; a close look at the people the Acts describe as new Christian converts; and a summary and analysis of the nature of the authors of the Acts. These women, like their sisters today, were seeking equal standing with men in the Chris­tian church.

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About the Author:

Stevan L. Davies is in the Department of Religious Studies at College Misericordia, Dallas, Pennsylvania.

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