Since the dawn of time, women have been fighting for equality. Although it has been a difficult battle, women have come a long way. They are able to vote and make their voices heard. They have careers. Women are becoming more independent and liberated each and every day. Feminism is not just a word anymore; it's a way of life.
Although women have established a higher status than they used to enjoy, there is a strong barrier blocking their path, and that is the Bible. In Genesis, the story of Adam and Eve gives strong support for the wicked nature of women. It is because of Eve that Adam eats the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, and it is because of Eve that they get banished from the Garden of Eden. However, if one takes a closer look, it becomes clear that this is just a matter of perception.
[...] Although one can analyze the Bible and conclude that Eve is in fact inferior and merely “supplementary,” other works of literature take much more radical approaches. Women are often viewed in such a low and horrific light that any modern feminist would be deeply offended. In contrast to this sort of literature, the role that Eve plays in the Bible upholds the philosophy that women are at least somewhat independent and able to make their own decisions. One such work, Thousand and One Nights,” discusses the differences between men and women, and identifies the resultant gender conflicts. [...]
[...] Hermeneutics of recuperation refers to aspects of feminism that reclaims portions of the Bible that are affirming to women and give women power. Hermeneutics of suspicion refers to feminists that admit that much of the Bible is patriarchal and andocentric. However, these women attempt to search for text in the Bible that is affirming to women. Hermeneutics of resistance refers to feminism that rejects the Bible as a source of authority and aims to read “against the grain” (Eve: Accused or Acquitted). [...]
[...] However, upon further examination, it becomes clear that although it is true that Eve ate the fruit and gave it to Adam, she is the stronger of the two. Eve questions what she is told; she thinks and she acts. Adam does not act without Eve. According to the Bible, [Eve] took its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he (Genesis). Therefore, when Eve eats the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, Genesis says Adam was standing right next to her. [...]
[...] It seems that today, Eve and her ideals are long forgotten. Women today do not view her as a symbol for the power of women because their goal and ideologies are so far removed from the Bible and its message. According to Valeska, “Every woman on Earth can draw strength and courage from the separatist slogan ‘power to women' because every women has experienced a measure of futility and powerlessness solely due to the fact that she is a female” (Valeska 20). [...]
[...] In the Women's Bible, Stanton refers to the story of Adam and Eve as an allegory or a myth. She supports Darwinian Theory of evolution as what might have actually occurred. When she discusses Eve's reasoning for listening to the snake, Stanton paints Eve as a powerful heroine, full of courage, dignity, and ambition. She stresses that Eve could only be persuaded by appealing to her desire to enhance her intellect. According to Stanton, "compared with Adam she [Eve] appears to great advantage through the entire drama" (The Woman's Bible). [...]
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