Ancient Taboos and Gender Prejudice : Challenges for Orthodox Women and the Church book cover
1st Edition

Ancient Taboos and Gender Prejudice
Challenges for Orthodox Women and the Church

ISBN 9781138275706
Published October 31, 2016 by Routledge
254 Pages

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Book Description

This book explores the struggling genesis of a women's movement in the Orthodox Church through the ecumenical movement of the twentieth century at a time when militant conservatism is emerging in Orthodox countries and fundamentalism in the diaspora. Offering an understanding of the participation of women in the Orthodox Church, particularly during the 50 years of the membership of the Orthodox churches in the World Council of Churches, this book contributes to the ongoing debates and feminist analysis of women's participation, ministry and sexuality in the life and practice of the Church universal. The book reveals both the positive contributions to ecumenism and the difficulties confronting Orthodox women wishing to participate more fully in the leadership and ministry of their church.

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction;The Orthodox Church, women's movements and ecumenical relationships; Women, ecumenism and the bounds in which she may work; Women are not subordinate, but they are different; Ignored by those who approved the priorities; Questions, consultations and challenges; Church and culture: human sexuality, ministry and participation; Militant conservatism and a movement of Orthodox women; Appendix; Select bibliography; Index.

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Leonie B. Liveris is Adjunct Research Fellow at Curtin University of Technology, Australia.


This subject is very important and the book is timely and likely to spark a lively discussion. Liveris is clearly the best informed scholar in this field. This book should open up a subject that many Orthodox want to duck. The text is well written and accessible to a lay as well as professional theological audience. Revd Dr Lawrence Cross, Senior Lecturer in Theology, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne This is a work of tremendous importance to the understanding of the more recent history of the Orthodox churches, as well as the ecumenical movement itself. The use of archival material from the World Council of Churches makes it a particularly striking account and provides a fresh vantage point to consider the work of the WCC. This work should find an influential and welcomed role within academic circles no less than in practical activity in the churches. Susan Ashbrook Harvey, Professor of Religious Studies, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USA 'Liveris's book is essential reading for anyone interested in the history of recent Orthodox thinking about the roles of women... Without pre-empting what forms women's leadership may take, Leonie Liveris has offered a carefully researched and yet passionately argued case for women's voices to be heard far more in the worship and governance of the Orthodox church. In this she has done her own church and the ecumenical movement a great service.' Anglican Theological Review