Christian Patriarchy and Complementarianism: “Separate But Equal” Puts on Lipstick

Complementarianism is a lie. Yeah. It’s fake. It doesn’t exist. What does exist is patriarchy in drag. Patriarchy slips into a pretty little number and tells you it’s helping you fulfill your God-given potential. It twirls around and smiles at you, showing you how beautiful you can be if you’ll only stop fighting and being so angry and just accept [Read More...]

Azizatu Nafsiha: Coming Into My Own

Saliha at Azizatu Nafsiha has begun to write a beautiful, thoughtful series about wrestling with faith and gender expectations as an African American Shi’a Muslim woman. It’s called “Coming Into My Own,” a theme to which most of my readers will relate. Her writing is lucid, elegant and transparent in its depth. I highly recommend following this [Read More...]

Modesty, Body Policing and Rape Culture: Connecting the Dots

Definition: The “modesty doctrine” is the belief that women need to cover their bodies to prevent men from being attracted to them, because sexual attraction is lust that leads to sin and death for both.  The modesty doctrine is not the same as wearing conservative clothing. You can do the latter without believing the former. The modesty [Read More...]

Fundamentalist Aesthetics

Man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart. -1 Samuel 16:7 Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society. -Mark Twain  In preparation for my next series, on how evangelical-fundamentalism instills homophobia in its youth, I’m going to talk for a moment about fundamentalist aesthetics. Every once in [Read More...]

The Last Name Project

From Two to One and The Feminist Mystique are co-hosting a series called The Last Name Project, “profiling an array of individuals and couples about their last name decisions upon marriage or what they expect to choose if they marry.” A little while ago, Libby Anne of Love, Joy, Feminism did a guest post for [Read More...]

Bedroom Submission, Birth Control and Tokophobia

Like most fundamentalist churches, mine taught that wives were commanded by God to give their husbands all the sex they wanted. Technically, husbands had to do the same for wives, but it would have been a strange, transgressive woman who wanted more sex than her husband. (Jonalyn Fincher of Her.meneutics and I disagree.) The rationale behind [Read More...]

Emotional Incest: The Junior Wife

Libby Anne has begun a series on Emotional Incest at Love, Joy, Feminism. In her latest post, she also links Hugo Schwyzer’s striking analysis of the problems with the “Daddy’s Girl” myth and princess culture. The following is my attempt to confirm and add more perspectives to the issue they are bringing to light. As [Read More...]

Contradictions: Who’s the Visual-est of Them All?

Fundamentalists argue that women should dress conservatively because men are visual. This is supposedly something women can’t possibly understand, because women are emotional, not visual. Women become attracted to men through flirtation and flattery; indeed, male visuality is like a foreign language to them. Men are not obliged to cover up for women for this [Read More...]

Women’s Equality is Not a Pill

I support women’s access to birth control. I use birth control, value it and believe in its ability to protect women from unwanted pregnancies and allow them to live fuller lives while pursuing their own goals. In a world where preparation for a career can take a quarter to a third of one’s life, the [Read More...]

How the Modesty Doctrine Hurts Men, Too

I’ve written a few times about how the modesty doctrine hurts women. Now it’s time to switch lenses. The modesty doctrine also wreaks havoc on the minds of young men in the Christian patriarchy movement. Here’s how: It teaches men to be afraid of women because their sexual power is too great to be resisted. It [Read More...]


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