Brandeis University Scholar’s Research Finds Women of Influence in Early Christian Times

BrootenBernadette J. Brooten, the Kraft-Hiatt Professor of Christian Studies at Brandeis University, has recently completed research using documents written around the same time as the Dead Sea scrolls, which shows that women held positions of power and influence in both Jewish and Christian societies. Dr. Brooten, who is also a professor of women’s and gender studies, classical studies, and religious studies at Brandeis, found documents that showed women who owned property and women who had obtained a divorce, previously considered by many not to be possible under the laws of that time.

Dr. Brooten found evidence that Christian women were called apostles and could perform baptisms, preach, and serve as elders of the church. Other documents showed that Jewish and Christian women were permitted to own slaves and enter into same-sex marriages.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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