Living on the Boundaries: Evangelical Women, Feminism, and the Theological Academy

By Bassett, Rodney L. | Journal of Psychology and Christianity, Winter 2006 | Go to article overview

Living on the Boundaries: Evangelical Women, Feminism, and the Theological Academy


Bassett, Rodney L., Journal of Psychology and Christianity


LIVING ON THE BOUNDARIES: EVANGELICAL WOMEN, FEMINISM, AND THE THEOLOGICAL ACADEMY. N. H. Creegan and C. D. Pohl, 2005. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. Pp. 203. Reviewed by Virginia Holeman (Asbury Theological Seminary/Wilmore, KY).

Creegan and Pohl's Living on the Boundaries is a sensitive, thoughtful, and at times provocative exploration of life in the theological academy as experienced by women faculty. Creegan and Pohl ask, "Is it possible to be both evangelical and feminist?" Using sociological and theological resources as lenses for critical analyses and the testimonies of women faculty, these authors reveal the joys and sorrows of women whose professional lives span the boundary "between two well-defined maps" (i.e., feminism and evangelicalism). Creegan and Pohl confine their interviews to women in disciplines such as theological studies, biblical studies, and church history, which have been historically less welcoming of women scholars than disciplines such as Christian education or pastoral care. Without being inflammatory or engaging in genderbashing, the authors tell the stories of women academics who negotiate the space between evangelicalism, feminism, the academy, and the evangelical church. Their findings may surprise you.

In the span of eight chapters, Creegan and Pohl explore the struggle that many schools have in "finding good women" and that many good academic women have in finding welcoming schools where their academic voices are heard and respected on multiple levels. The authors note that some women find the boundary between feminism and evangelicalism too challenging to navigate, and so these women opt to align themselves on one map or the other. …

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