Dying to Be Men: Gender and Language in Early Christian Martyr Texts [NOOK Book]

Overview


At once brave and athletic, virtuous and modest, female martyrs in the second and third centuries were depicted as self-possessed gladiators who at the same time exhibited the quintessentially "womanly" qualities of modesty, fertility, and beauty. L. Stephanie Cobb explores the double embodiment of "male" and "female" gender ideals in these figures, connecting them to Greco-Roman virtues and the construction of Christian group identities.

Both male and female martyrs conducted ...

See more details below
Dying to Be Men: Gender and Language in Early Christian Martyr Texts

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$34.49
BN.com price
(Save 42%)$59.99 List Price

Overview


At once brave and athletic, virtuous and modest, female martyrs in the second and third centuries were depicted as self-possessed gladiators who at the same time exhibited the quintessentially "womanly" qualities of modesty, fertility, and beauty. L. Stephanie Cobb explores the double embodiment of "male" and "female" gender ideals in these figures, connecting them to Greco-Roman virtues and the construction of Christian group identities.

Both male and female martyrs conducted their battles in the amphitheater, a masculine environment that enabled the divine combatants to showcase their strength, virility, and volition. These Christian martyr accounts also illustrated masculinity through the language of justice, resistance to persuasion, and-more subtly but most effectively-the juxtaposition of "unmanly" individuals (usually slaves, the old, or the young) with those at the height of male maturity and accomplishment (such as the governor or the proconsul).

Imbuing female martyrs with the same strengths as their male counterparts served a vital function in Christian communities. Faced with the possibility of persecution, Christians sought to inspire both men and women to be braver than pagan and Jewish men. Yet within the community itself, traditional gender roles had to be maintained, and despite the call to be manly, Christian women were expected to remain womanly in relation to the men of their faith. Complicating our understanding of the social freedoms enjoyed by early Christian women, Cobb's investigation reveals the dual function of gendered language in martyr texts and its importance in laying claim to social power.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Church History - Colleen M. Conway

Overall, Dying to be Men is a well-written and worthwhile contribution to the growing number of studies on the function of gender in early Christian texts.

Biblical Theology Bulletin - Taylor Petrey

This book is to be commended for its lucid articulation of the question of gendered presentations in the martyr acts and its efforts to answer this question with a clear, consistent thesis.

Choice

Dying to Be Men successfully conveys the surprising and subversive ways early Christian martyrologies appropriated the notion of masculinity... Recommended.

Church History
Overall, Dying to be Men is a well-written and worthwhile contribution to the growing number of studies on the function of gender in early Christian texts.

— Colleen M. Conway

Biblical Theology Bulletin
This book is to be commended for its lucid articulation of the question of gendered presentations in the martyr acts and its efforts to answer this question with a clear, consistent thesis.

— Taylor Petrey

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231518208
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 7/16/2012
  • Series: Gender, Theory, and Religion
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,397,606
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author


L. Stephanie Cobb is assistant professor of New Testament and Early Christianity in the Religion Department at Hofstra University.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments     ix
Abbreviations     xi
Introduction: Constructing Identity Through Cultural Appropriation     1
Scholarship and Early Christian Martyrologies     3
Martyrdom and Identity Formation     8
Christianity and the Roman World: Appropriation or Subversion?     11
What Is a Christian? Constructing a Christian Identity     18
Constructing Social Identity     19
Social Identity Theory Applied     22
Sex and Gender in Antiquity     24
Noble Athletes: Gladiatorial, Athletic, and Martial Imagery in the Martyr Acts     33
Martyrdom and the Amphitheater     34
The Gladiator in Antiquity     47
The Athlete and the Soldier in Antiquity     55
Be a Man: Narrative Tools of Masculinization in Early Christian Martyr Acts     60
Masculinity and Virtue     61
Constructing Masculinity by Comparison     80
Putting Women in Their Place: Masculinizing and Feminizing the Female Martyr     92
Perpetua     94
Felicitas     111
Blandina     113
Agathonike     116
Conclusion: Gender and Language in Early Christian Martyr Texts     124
Notes     129
Bibliography     185
Index     203
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)