This book is a little gem shining in the darkness!
But a confused little gem.
Engaging feminist hermeneutics and philosophy in addition to more traditional methods of biblical study, Salty Wives, Spirited Mothers, and Savvy Widows demonstrates and celebrates the remarkable capability and ingenuity of several women in the Gospel of Luke. While recent studies have exposed women’s limited opportunities for ministry in Luke, Scott Spencer pulls the pendulum back from a negative feminist-critical pole toward a more constructive center.
Granting that Luke sends somewhat “mixed messages” about women’s work and status as Jesus’ disciples, Spencer analyzes such women as Mary, Elizabeth, Joanna, Martha and Mary, and the infamous yet intriguing wife of Lot — whom Jesus exhorts his followers to “remember” — as well as the unrelentingly persistent women characters in Jesus’ parables.
Mary Ann Beavis tells us that this is a “welcome contribution to feminist discourse on the Gospel of Luke.”
But that’s where I am confused.
Recent studies have not “exposed women’s limited opportunities for ministry in Luke”. Recent studies have shown that Luke was actually the first “second wave” feminist (Jesus was the first “first wave” feminist).
I am also confused by this: “Scott Spencer pulls the pendulum back from a negative feminist-critical pole toward a more constructive center.”
Negative feminist-critical approaches ARE the constructive center.
Or at least they should be.
But what I interpret Spencer to be doing is bringing in feminist criticism to the constructive center to show everyone that, hey, this stuff is challenging but it speaks to us and can touch our hearts as women or men.
In her endorsement, Warren Carter asks: “Is Luke’s Gospel the most dangerous book in the Bible for women and men?”
Oh yes it is.
With bells on.
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