October 29, 2007

Living On the Boundaries

This isn't exactly a book review, I will have more on this later - perhaps even in the form of an interview. But if you have a chance, this book is a well written analysis of the relationship between women theologians, feminism, and the academy. Let me first get this off the table - I'm not a feminist. However, I think feminism has served well to point out some of the disparities associated with gender. This book largely responds to the question, Where are the good women? as it pertains to women theologians in Christian institutions.

I appreciate this particular thought conveyed by the authors about where some women like us often find ourselves....and it can be very distressing.

For academic women to endure anti-intellectual elements of the subculture and to be marginal in the academic culture is a difficult combination, but one that is often taken on as a call or a responsibility. (p. 42)

Says a female evangelical,

Granted, the anti-intellectual aspects of American evangelicalism can be frustrating, and the anti-woman bias has the potential to get on my last good nerve. However, my identification as an evangelical means that I cannot just abandon them whenever they annoy me. (p. 43)

The theological truths that I hold will always be what steers my involvement in all areas of life. I am not at risk of cutting my ties to evangelicalism either. I'm neither interested in for myself or any other women the role of senior pastor or elder, but I do believe women have a great deal to offer the church in the area of education, and as I continue to pursue my own education and seek my first academic assignments, I'm thankful for women like Nancy Pearcey, Christine Pohl, Nicola Creegan, and others who are opening up the discussion. I'm also thankful for the male academics who have seen and communicate about the injustices to women in the theological academy, and I'm especially grateful for those who inspire me to continue.

Living On the Boundaries, IVP
ISBN: 0830826653

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