Celibacy Is the Lynch-Pin of Male Dominance according to Matilda Joslyn Gage by Carol P. Christ

Matilda Joslyn Gage

Matilda Joslyn Gage was an activist in the nineteenth century struggle for women’s rights equal to Susan B. Anthony, and a writer and theorist equal to Elizabeth Cady Stanton. That she is not remembered is due in large part to Susan B. Anthony’s efforts to write her out of history.

Matilda Joslyn Gage was also a scholar of women’s history unrivaled in her time. In Woman Church, and State, Gage argued that “the most grievous wrong ever inflicted upon women was in the Christian teaching that she was not created equal with man.” (page 1) From this it follows that feminists must never lose sight of the role Christian teachings have played and continue to play in the unequal treatment of women.

According to Gage, women’s position in church and state did not improve in the Christian era. To the contrary it declined! Gage proved this thesis in chapters titled: The Matriarchate, Celibacy, Canon Law, Marquette, Witchcraft, Wives, Polygamy, Woman and Work, and The Church of Today. Continue reading “Celibacy Is the Lynch-Pin of Male Dominance according to Matilda Joslyn Gage by Carol P. Christ”

Lucy Burns, A Look at a Catholic American Suffragette by Michele Stopera Freyhauf

As we approach the election period infused with controversy, saturated by television commercials, as well as endless advertisements on the radio, Internet, and yes, even Facebook, we must remember the sacrifices made by our foremothers during the suffrage movement, which gave women the right to vote.  While all elections are important, this one has targeted issues involving women in a way that could negatively impact our rights – to the point of rewinding the clock on progress made in women’s equality during the last 40+ years.  This election needs the voice of all informed voters.  However,  it is imperative for all women to make their voices heard this year by casting a vote.  To turn a blind eye to these issues diminishes the sacrifices our foremothers made for us. To not cast a vote takes away your voice, makes you a silent bystander – something that was tried by the government and patriarchal system during the suffrage movement.

To illustrate this, I would like to highlight Lucy Burns and the Night of Terror endured at the Occoquan Workhouse by her and many of her friends.   Of all Suffragettes, Lucy Burns spent more time in jail then any other protesters.  Born 1879 in Brooklyn, Lucy was raised in the Roman Catholic tradition by a father who believed that his sons and daughters should be educated equally.  Burns gradated from Vassar College in 1902, then attended Yale Graduate School studying linguistics.  She eventually went to Oxford University in England to resume her studies.  It was at Oxford that she became involved with activism and the suffrage movement. Continue reading “Lucy Burns, A Look at a Catholic American Suffragette by Michele Stopera Freyhauf”

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