Images of the Feminine in Gnosticism

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Karen L. King
A&C Black, Sep 1, 2000 - Religion - 455 pages
2 Reviews
In this groundbreaking collection of essays, King and other contributors engage in a systematic study of issues of gender in Gnosticism. Using a variety of critical methods, the writers ask questions such as: What is the relationship of gendered images to the real lives of women and men? Did ascetic or libertine practices offer an attractive alternative to women in a patriarchal society? Are the images of strong, female goddesses, saviors, and heroines an indication Gnosticism would have been attractive to women? Is it plausible that women in some gnostic groups were authors, teachers, and leaders? Is it possible that some of the Gnostic texts we possess were written by women? What parts did women play in ritual? Did asceticism or libertinism have a different set of social functions for women than for men? These lucid essays offer significant insights into the cultural context and religious practices of Gnosticism.
 

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This book is a collection of talks given at an academic conference on women in Gnosticism (organized by a prominent female scholar). (The number of female contributors to this book and conference ... Read full review

Contents

Observations on Coptic
23
A Response to Gender and Generation
41
Prouneikos A Colorful Expression to Designate Wisdom
47
A Response to Prouneikos
67
Madeleine Scopello
91
Sophia as Goddess in the Nag Hammadi Codices
96
Jesus Better Self
113
Robinson
128
A Response to Virginity and Subversion
259
Revisiting Norea
265
Corinthian Veils and Gnostic Androgynes
276
Dennis Ronald MacDonald
293
The Social Functions of Womens Asceticism in the Roman
308
A Response to The Social Functions of Womens Asceticism
324
Sex Education in Gnostic Schools
345
Richard Smith
361

Female Figures in the Gnostic Sondergut in Hippolytuss
136
A Response to Female Figures
153
King
177
Imagery and Hermeneutics
187
the Hypostasis of the Archons and the Gospel of Philip 187
207
A Response to The Holy Spirit Is a Double Name
228
Norea Against the Powers in
239
Augustines Manichean
367
A Response to Vitiated Seeds and Holy Vessels
402
Adam and Eve and the Serpent in Genesis 13
412
Works Cited
425
Index
447
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About the author (2000)

Karen L. King is Professor of Religious Studies at Occidental College, Los Angeles. She is the editor of Images of the Feminine in Gnosticism (Fortress Press, 1998).

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