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This workshop considers the real nature of Greco-Roman and early Jewish culture, and how this should change the way we read various passages in the New Testament related to women and their roles.

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This lecture covers an array of exegetical views expressed by Christian commentators of the ancient, medieval, and Reformation eras, and how their perspectives and concerns can be surprisingly similar to the concerns of feminist and womanist critics today.

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In this workshop, Jussi Suutari will discuss some verses (e.g. Eph. 5) that were important to him during over his own personal struggle with the Bible. The conflict grew out of hierarchical teachings he was hearing on some verses in Paul's letters, since through his own Bible reading he was seeing the overall egalitarian message of the Bible.

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Was C. S. Lewis a misogynist? The answer depends on which point in his life you choose to examine. Until fairly late in life, Lewis’ view of gender relations was more influenced by his attraction to classical Greek philosophy, Pagan myth and Jungian psychology than by ‘mere’ Christianity. However, with his late acquaintance and marriage to the gifted American writer Joy Davidman, this began to change, as can be seen in his last (but least-read) works, The Discarded ImageTill We Have Faces, and A Grief Observed.

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This workshop defines various types of feminism and analyzes their similarities and differences.

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Julia Kavanaugh, an Irish Roman Catholic, was a Victorian novelist and biographer. Her book "Women of Christianity" offers the earliest survey of women’s lives in the Christian tradition. This text refutes the frequent charge of trendiness of egalitarianism, as it was written 150 years ago. It confronts male-dominated history (“great events, dazzling actions”) as pagan and transcends the “wearisome similarity” often depicted in saints’ lives. Finally, her book invites connections with contemporary feminist texts.

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When rightly understood, Gen. 2:24-25 and Eph. 5: 21-33 provide an almost formula-like description for a pleasurable, loving, faithful marriage of oneness built on equality and mutuality. Modern science teaches what the writers of Genesis and Ephesians could not have known.

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