1st Edition

Zeus Syndrome A Very Short History of Religion-Based Masculine Domination

By Joachim Kügler Copyright 2023
    152 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    152 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Zeus Syndrome: A Very Short History of Religion-Based Masculine Domination is a critical assessment of the biblical concepts of gender hierarchy and the intersection of sex/gender, power, and religion.

    Starting with #MeToo and the abuse of religious power in the Catholic Church, it also presents a concise selection of historical case studies. In doing so, the book demonstrates how a specific construction of the relationship between sex/gender, power and religion not only excludes women and every person conceived as feminine or effeminate from power but also produces – almost automatically – a rape culture, which uses and excuses violent sexuality as an appropriate manifestation of masculine power. Biblical studies is increasingly interdisciplinary and frequently focuses on contextualising the reading of biblical texts. This volume focuses on how:

    • The Bible is intertwined with other religio-cultural traditions in the Mediterranean world
    • Biblical and extra-biblical ancient concepts of gender hierarchy have left traces in the cultural memory, particularly of the Western world
    • The Bible is received and applied in the contemporary world, above all in the politics, news media, and churches of Western post-Christian societies and African Christianity

    Throughout this text, religious history and biblical tradition are linked with recent conflicts to show how traces of these concepts continue to resonate and influence the world of today even in post-Christian societies.


    1. A Female King? – The Public Body of Hatshepsut

    2. Hatshepsut Baptised: Christian Women as Sons of God

    3. Why One Must Not Turn a Man into a Woman (Egypt – Greece – Rome)

    4. Defending Masculinity Under Oppression: The Biblical Plan to Be Different

    5. The Beautiful Ruler and The Ugly Redeemer

    6. "God-Wives", "Old Virgins", "Young Widows": Women Without Human


    7. Zeus-Syndrome, #MeToo and the Hope for Something New




    Joachim Kügler is a Professor of New Testament Studies at University of Bamberg, Germany.