Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [GTh] Misogyny in L.114?

Expand Messages
  • Bob Schacht
    At 12:25 PM 11/17/2010, Michael Grondin wrote: [snip] ... I ve got a slightly different take on this. Is it misogyny if the entire culture is misogynistic ?
    Message 1 of 9 , Nov 17, 2010
    • 0 Attachment
      At 12:25 PM 11/17/2010, Michael Grondin wrote:

      [snip]

      ...From what I gather, Burke's objection to labeling L114 'misogynistic' is
      that the label is overly-simplistic and anachronistic. (My own objection
      would be that it's a misuse of language.) Burke's initial target was conservative
      apologists like Witherington, but Bowman shows that liberal scholars like
      Pagels, Meyer, Patterson, and Marjanen also view L114 as non-egalitarian.
      With respect to the label 'misogynistic', however, only Meyer uses it. Bowman
      seems to be implying a dichotomy between 'egalitarian' and 'misogynistic',
      so that, if a scholar finds L114 to be non-egalitarian, they must be inferring
      that L114 is misogynistic. Such a dichotomy has no basis in linguistic
      usage. 'Misogyny' is defined as a hatred of women - or perhaps dislike, to
      weaken it a bit. To regard women as second-class members of a group,
      as L114 apparently does, is not to hate/dislike them per se. So I would
      fault Bowman for blurring the line between non-egalitarianism and outright
      misogyny. Unfortunately, Meyer (in one of his writings) also uses the term,
      but he seems to have a theory about women being associated with the
      lower realms. Whether or not that excuses his use of the term is open to
      question, but in my view the label 'misogynist' ought not to be thrown
      around so loosely as it apparently has been in some quarters....

      I've got a slightly different take on this. Is it misogyny if the entire culture is "misogynistic"? If the entire culture considers women to be second-class citizens, then what is the point of calling a certain statement of someone from that culture misogynistic?  Isn't this a form of ethnocentrism?

      Misogyny implies an abnormality-- an unusual dislike or hatred of women-- does it not? But if the cultural norm is that women are second-class citizens, then it seems out of place to use the term. As you wrote, "To regard women as second-class members of a group, as L114 apparently does, is not to hate/dislike them per se."

      We need a term like "anacronistic" that applies to cultural differences, and "ethnocentric" is close. Misogyny, when applied to patriarchal societies, is ethnocentric. It is not an objective term, but a value judgment.

      BTW, I am not defending the fairness of L. 114; in my system of values, women are not second-class citizens. But in the case of L. 114, the writer is probably expressing a normative thought for his/her time and place.

      Bob Schacht
      Northern Arizona University
    • William Arnal
      ... does it not? But if the cultural norm is that women are second-class citizens, then it seems out of place to use the term. As you wrote, To regard women
      Message 2 of 9 , Nov 17, 2010
      • 0 Attachment

        Bob Schacht writes:

        >Misogyny implies an abnormality-- an unusual dislike or hatred of women--
        does it not? But if the cultural norm is that women are second-class citizens, then it seems out of place to use the term. >As you wrote, "To regard women as second-class members of a group, as L114 apparently does, is not to hate/dislike them per se."

        JUST what I was trying to say, but more clearly put. Thanks, Bob!

        cheers,
        Bill
        ______________________
        William Arnal
        University of Regina

      • Michael Grondin
        ... Hmm. I have to say that this seems rather flimsy to me. I m used to Jack Kilmon theorizing that all sorts of NT characters had family ties to Jesus, but et
        Message 3 of 9 , Nov 17, 2010
        • 0 Attachment
          > ... I ... note that the figures in Thomas who are generally presented as
          > positive (Mary, Salome, Judas Thomas, James) all have claims to being
          > members of Jesus' biological family. If this is so, it would militate
          > toward
          > the Mary here [L114] being either Jesus' mother, or one of his sisters.

          Hmm. I have to say that this seems rather flimsy to me. I'm used to Jack
          Kilmon theorizing that all sorts of NT characters had family ties to Jesus,
          but et tu, Bill? (:-) Anyway, in order to buck the consensus for MM in 114,
          I think that the suggested pattern needs to be pretty strong, and I just
          don't
          see that it is. Aside from Mary (who can't be considered because she's the
          one in question), there's only three in the list, and two of them (Salome
          and
          Thomas) are questionable at best, as I think you'll agree.

          Best,
          Mike
        • William Arnal
          Hey Mike: Just tossing it out there as a possibility that would have an effect who we understand Mary to be. I agree that the speculation is especially thin
          Message 4 of 9 , Nov 18, 2010
          • 0 Attachment

            Hey Mike:

            Just tossing it out there as a possibility that would have an effect who we understand Mary to be. I agree that the speculation is especially thin re. Salome. In the case of Thomas, I think it's stronger -- all this talk about "Judas the twin" suggests a family relationship to me, and there does seem to be church tradition to this effect (canonical Jude; non-canonical Acts of Thomas). But this is not a position I'd want to go to the wall for, and besides, I'm off to Altanta in a few minutes.

            cheers,
            Bill
            ______________________
            William Arnal
            University of Regina




            To: gthomas@yahoogroups.com
            From: mwgrondin@...
            Date: Thu, 18 Nov 2010 02:13:33 -0500
            Subject: Re: [GTh] Misogyny in L.114?

             
            > ... I ... note that the figures in Thomas who are generally presented as
            > positive (Mary, Salome, Judas Thomas, James) all have claims to being
            > members of Jesus' biological family. If this is so, it would militate
            > toward
            > the Mary here [L114] being either Jesus' mother, or one of his sisters.

            Hmm. I have to say that this seems rather flimsy to me. I'm used to Jack
            Kilmon theorizing that all sorts of NT characters had family ties to Jesus,
            but et tu, Bill? (:-) Anyway, in order to buck the consensus for MM in 114,
            I think that the suggested pattern needs to be pretty strong, and I just
            don't
            see that it is. Aside from Mary (who can't be considered because she's the
            one in question), there's only three in the list, and two of them (Salome
            and
            Thomas) are questionable at best, as I think you'll agree.

            Best,
            Mike


          • sarban
            ... From: Michael Grondin To: gthomas@yahoogroups.com Sent: Wednesday, November 17, 2010 7:25 PM Subject: [GTh] Misogyny in L.114? From what I gather, Burke s
            Message 5 of 9 , Nov 18, 2010
            • 0 Attachment
               
              ----- Original Message -----
              Sent: Wednesday, November 17, 2010 7:25 PM
              Subject: [GTh] Misogyny in L.114?

               

              From what I gather, Burke's objection to labeling L114 'misogynistic' is
              that the label is overly-simplistic and anachronistic. (My own objection
              would be that it's a misuse of language.) Burke's initial target was conservative
              apologists like Witherington, but Bowman shows that liberal scholars like
              Pagels, Meyer, Patterson, and Marjanen also view L114 as non-egalitarian.
              With respect to the label 'misogynistic', however, only Meyer uses it. Bowman
              seems to be implying a dichotomy between 'egalitarian' and 'misogynistic',
              so that, if a scholar finds L114 to be non-egalitarian, they must be inferring
              that L114 is misogynistic. Such a dichotomy has no basis in linguistic
              usage. 'Misogyny' is defined as a hatred of women - or perhaps dislike, to
              weaken it a bit. To regard women as second-class members of a group,
              as L114 apparently does, is not to hate/dislike them per se. So I would
              fault Bowman for blurring the line between non-egalitarianism and outright
              misogyny. Unfortunately, Meyer (in one of his writings) also uses the term,
              but he seems to have a theory about women being associated with the
              lower realms. Whether or not that excuses his use of the term is open to
              question, but in my view the label 'misogynist' ought not to be thrown
              around so loosely as it apparently has been in some quarters.
               
              I agree that the term misogynist carries problematic modern baggage 
              However I think we need a term for overt hostility towards the femimine
              (a hostility that certainly need not involve any hostility towards individual women)
              and I think misogynist may be the best term available.
              Passages like Zostrianos "Flee the madness and the bondage of feminity and and choose
              for yourselves the salvation of masculinity" seem clearly misogynist in this sense.
              L.114 is not as strong as Zostrianos but probably reflects the same ideas.
               
               
              There is another question about L114 that I found to be of interest, viz.
              which Mary (or better, Mariam) is in view there? Myself, I think that it
              must be the Magdalene, since the question at issue in L114 is whether
              that Mariam should be included in the Boys Club of the disciples. But
              the name 'Mariam' also occurs in L21, asking Jesus who his disciples
              are like. I've always considered the Mariam of L21 to be J's mother, on
              the grounds that her question seems to distance her from J's disciples
              in a way that the Magdalene presumably would not have been presented.
              But others seem to think that the two references to a Mariam must be to
              the same person. Any thoughts on this matter?
               
              Mike Grondin
              Mt. Clemens, MI

            • sarban
              ... From: sarban To: gthomas@yahoogroups.com Sent: Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:54 PM Subject: Re: [GTh] Misogyny in L.114? There is another question about
              Message 6 of 9 , Nov 18, 2010
              • 0 Attachment
                 
                ----- Original Message -----
                From: sarban
                Sent: Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:54 PM
                Subject: Re: [GTh] Misogyny in L.114?

                 

                 
                 
                 
                There is another question about L114 that I found to be of interest, viz.
                which Mary (or better, Mariam) is in view there? Myself, I think that it
                must be the Magdalene, since the question at issue in L114 is whether
                that Mariam should be included in the Boys Club of the disciples. But
                the name 'Mariam' also occurs in L21, asking Jesus who his disciples
                are like. I've always considered the Mariam of L21 to be J's mother, on
                the grounds that her question seems to distance her from J's disciples
                in a way that the Magdalene presumably would not have been presented.
                But others seem to think that the two references to a Mariam must be to
                the same person. Any thoughts on this matter?
                 
                Mike Grondin
                Mt. Clemens, MI

                (This part of my original reply somehow vanished sorry)
                There has been a lot of relatively recent debate over whether the Mariam
                in various Gnostic texts is the Magdalene or the Mother of Jesus
                "Which Mary ?" edited by Stanley Jones is a good collection of essays with
                an important paper by Shoemaker (who proposes that the Mother of Jesus is
                meant) and various replies. 
                 
                 
                Andrew Criddle
              • Michael Grondin
                ... One might add Woe to you all who love intimacy with womankind and polluted intercourse with them! from Thomas the Contender (NHL, p.206). No wonder this
                Message 7 of 9 , Nov 18, 2010
                • 0 Attachment
                  [Andrew Criddle]:
                  > I agree that the
                  term misogynist carries problematic modern baggage
                  > However I think
                  we need a term for overt hostility towards the femimine 
                  > (a
                  hostility that certainly need not involve any hostility towards individual
                  > women) and I think misogynist may be the best term available. Passages
                  > like Zostrianos "Flee the madness and the bondage of feminity and and choose
                  > for yourselves the
                  salvation of masculinity" seem clearly misogynist in this sense.
                  > L.114 is not as strong as Zostrianos but probably reflects the
                  same ideas.

                  One might add "Woe to you all who love intimacy with womankind and
                  polluted intercourse with them!" from Thomas the Contender (NHL, p.206).
                  No wonder this brand of Gnosticism died out, and good riddance to it!
                  (This comment from one who welcomes the suffering of such woes!)
                  But what I see in GTh is a much more moderate view on this and several
                  other matters. The only hostility in L.114 comes from Peter, and his view
                  is refuted. Elsewhere, there is hostility expressed towards one's natural
                  parents, but that's both genders. There's even a hint of a heavenly mother,
                  in addition to a heavenly father. The two women in the text, Salome and
                  Mariam, are treated with respect by the Jesus-character, not hostility. Not
                  to mention the talk in L22 of making the male and female one and the same.
                  All of this seems to me to markedly conflict with the material you and
                  I have quoted from external texts. Perhaps those later texts were an out-
                  growth of the earlier, more moderate GTh?
                   
                  Mike Grondin
                Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.