Opinion | Church

Re: Evangelical Women in Public Life

Alisa Harris, editor at Patrol magazine, responded to the question we posed last Thursday, "Where are all the evangelical women in public life?" by pointing to prevalent beliefs about women and spirituality. Here's her helpful analysis:

That's what's interesting—women have more influence inside the church than outside it. Why is this? My guess is that the evangelical church accepts women in the role of spiritual counselors because of the lingering Victorian idea that women are gentler, more spiritual and just all around more naturally virtuous than men. They're good at Bible studies and exhorting people to live good lives …. But (so the idea goes) they should do it privately, not publicly since women's sphere is in the home. Not in the pulpit and not in the public square. Also (so they say) women deal with emotions and not reason. It's a way of putting women on a pedestal but also limiting their role, their development, and especially men's development, too.

Harris then links ...

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