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Quiverfull: Inside The Christian Patriarchy Movement (2009)

by Kathryn Joyce(Favorite Author)
3.72 of 5 Votes: 5
0807010707 (ISBN13: 9780807010709)
Beacon Press
review 1: It was hard to read this book, but I could not stop. It was a fascinating look at a US subculture where patriarchy is encouraged, homeschooling is the norm and women have lots and lots of babies to form the next army of the lord. The most disturbing/fascinating aspect of the book for me was how many of the organizations, names and ideas were intimately familiar as part of my childhood and early adulthood experiences. Nothing ever got taken to the extreme as in some of these groups, but it is easy to see how, in the right economic and political context with the right charismatic male leader, women chose to become, literally, second class citizens. This is perhaps a call to examine the subtle ways women are seen as "not quite equal" in more mainstream, conservative evangelic... moreal circles, especially taking into account current political climates. Also revealing that several of the male leaders mentioned in the book, such as Doug Philips, are now facing charges for sexual harassment and abuse of women under their care.
review 2: I hardly know what to say about this book. I can say that I enjoyed it. But I can't say that it was a comfortable read, or even one that appealed. My enjoyment came more from the fact that it was informative and challenging, and also the fact that it wasn't presented as "propaganda" but merely a series of facts and observations that allowed the reader to make their own conclusions. Now, I have many Christian friends, and friends of many other denominations as well, and I do not fault these people for having faith. In fact, I think faith is a very important part of life. Faith in what may be debateable, but for the most part I think that if people chose to live good lives that the who is less important. But the message of this book isn't about leading that kind of life. It speaks to (far) right Christian fundamentalism in general, and in particular, the Quiverfull movement. Now, what is interesting is that in several places the book makes it clear that leaders of these coupled movements claim that this is non-political. And then, with barely a breath taken, the message goes on to totally refute this - it's actually quite amusing even as it is mind boggling. I have often said that The Handmaid's Tale is one of the most frightening books that I have ever read, and this book here speaks to why. The math, as they put it, is quite simple. If I have two children, and my children each have two children, and their children each have two children - we've got, what, 14? Now, if I'm a member of Quiverfull, and I have ten children and they each have ten children, and each of those children has ten children - well, you do the math and then lets talk about political power. (But remember, they're not a political movement. Right?) I won't even begin to address the matter of women and submission. You really have to read this mix of Old and New Testament theology to begin to get a sense of what is going on. No. Really. You do. less
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This was a fascinating book about a lifestyle and beliefs that are completely unfamiliar to me.
A highly unsettling yet very informative book.
Scary. Describes my marriage.
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