How do you make the transition from being a patriarchal Baptist fundamentalist to embracing being a feminist? It goes something like this.
Fundamentalists no longer literally keep their women barefoot and pregnantÂ (or at least not barefoot) but they do tend to want to keep them at home. After all, “keepers at home” is what Paul said, right? Of course, he also gave rules for how a man should treat his slaves, so there may be a wee bit of a cultural gap there. But cultural context is for liberals and feminists, amen?
After all, the Proverbs 31 woman is the perfect example ofÂ a keeper at home. Yeah, she bought and sold goods but that was a…uh…home based business! And all that stuff about her traipsing around buying and selling real estate is…um…well, I’m sure it’s a lot more complicated in the original Hebrew and a fundamentalist pastor can set it all straight if given half a chance.
Turns out there are a lot of women doing all kinds of stuff in the Bible: Deborah, Lydia, Priscilla, Phoebe, Mary, Tryphaena, Typhosa and Persis to name a few. And other than being judges, businesswomen, deaconesses, and apostles, I’m sure none of them would ever have dreamed of putting on shoes and leaving the house.