1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A refreshingly original series of reflections on women and church,
This review is from: Eve's Pilgrimage: A Woman's Quest for the City of God (Paperback)
At first, I thought this was going to be `just' another Christian feminist critique of Christianity, re-emphasising points well worth making but already somewhat familiar. But once I got past the first few pages, it had some refreshingly original turns. Using Rome's art and architecture as her jumping-off point for reflection, Beattie provides valuable insight into the patriarchal nature of the church in history and the possibilities for recovering a more woman-centred focus for the future. Whether musing on the significance of the differences between Michelangelo's `Creation of Adam' and `Creation of Eve' in the Sistine Chapel, or on the Colosseum as symbolising the easy accommodation of violence in the Christian tradition (Cain's sin has traditionally preoccupied - largely male - theologians far less than Eve's supposed misdemeanours), Beattie is always stimulating. I particularly appreciated her discussion of the way the Reformation and Counter-Reformation traditions both spiritualised Mary while denigrating Eve, the result being churches that pay far too little attention to the body. By the time she gets onto considering the significance for women's bodies of (bodily) resurrection, the author is in full imaginative flow as to the possibilities for genuinely creative `relational' living. A work that should amply repay careful rereading and meditation.