Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

"In Christo Ist Weder Man Noch Weyb": Frauen in der Zeit der Reformation Und der Katholischen Reform

Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

"In Christo Ist Weder Man Noch Weyb": Frauen in der Zeit der Reformation Und der Katholischen Reform

Article excerpt

"In Christo ist weder man noch weyb": Frauen in der Zeit der Reformation and der katholischen Reform. Edited by Anne Conrad. [Katholisches Leben and Kirchenreform im Zeitalter der Glaubensspaltung, 59.] (Munster/W.: Aschendorff Verlag, 1999. Pp. 232. DM 39.80.)

Nearly every one of these ten essays sets out research topics that urgently need treatment. The relative lack of scholarship on women's responses to the Reformation, including the Catholic Reform, is itself a salient theme of this collection. Although in the list of authors, many of the contributors are styled as theologians-and several, too, as historians-their work here is not on religious ideas in the abstract but rather the practical implications of the Reformation for women's everyday existence. Several essays are elementary surveys that may be useful in the Germanophone undergraduate classroom but will tell the expert nothing new. Indeed, as Nicole Grochowina (pp. 95-113) concedes, in her consideration of the scope for women's action in the Anabaptist movement, that [North] American research is farthest along. Alas, even at that, C. Arnold Snyder and Linda A. Huebert Hecht, Profiles of Anabaptist Women (Waterloo, Ontario, 1996) has eluded her.

Other essays are of definite scholarly interest. Antje Ruttgardt (pp. 69-94) takes up the pamphlet debate between 1523 and 1528 over female monasticism in particular. This polemic, waged with greater dynamism from the Evangelical side, quickly shifted from the inevitable burdens on nuns' consciences as a result of having been placed in convents against their will, to the principle that women's proper role lay in serving as wife and mother. …

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