Date of Award

Spring 5-10-2014

Degree Type

Thesis

Department

Religious Studies

Director of Thesis

James Cutsinger

First Reader

Randy Akers

Abstract

The goal of this thesis is to give an in depth analysis of the feminist movement and the effects it has had on society and the family unit. The first portion of the thesis will be allotted to a historical account of the feminist movement and the various feminist theories that it spawned throughout the three waves of the movement. After the account of the movement itself, a description of the four categories of feminist ideologies will be explained and mildly critiqued. Once the historical stage has been set, a thorough criticism feminism will be performed and particular emphasis will be devoted to the faults within the current phase of feminism: post-modern feminism. Through this examination, the various societal ramifications borne of the feminist movement will be listed and scrutinized. This will include a discussion of how feminism has affected marriage, respect for women, gender roles, careerism, morality, artificial methods of contraception, and childrearing. After the negative consequences of feminist ideology have been discussed, the Biblical renderings of traditional gender roles will be given and considered at length. This will include discussions about how weakness and dependency are viewed in the New Testament and the Biblical depiction of the creation of man and woman in the Book of Genesis, as well as the implications that it maintains for gender roles. A comparison between traditional and feminist ideals will be made that will be evidence of the superiority of traditional gender roles rather than those endorsed post-modern feminism. Ending the body of the thesis will be a discussion entailing a rendering of how facets of society and the family would appear if the teachings of the Church had influenced them rather than feminism. A brief passage that describes how society may return to the traditional gender roles is also included.

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