Saturday, October 08, 2005

And the award goes to...

I'm not yet far enough along in the quarter to say which assigned books I like best, find most helpful, or consider most intelligent. I can, however, assess the gender balance in this quarter's reading assignments. So for those of you who have been waiting with bated breath to hear how this quarter would pan out - for Pete's sake, find a new hobby. For the rest of you:

Church, Ministry, and Culture: 5 assigned books - one by a woman, four by men. Rating: sadly, acceptable.

Ethics: 7 assigned books (6 in print, 1 out of print): 6 (all in print) by men, 1 (out of print) by a woman. Rating: Well, it doesn't put a book by a woman on my bookshelf. On the other hand, the professor didn't know the Lebacqz book was out of print until just before school started. So we'll go with another acceptable and hope that next year's class might get one that's in print and by a woman.

Preaching: 3 assigned books - 1 by a man, 1 by a woman, 1 co-authored by a man and a woman. Rating: Excellent!!!

Praying with Scripture: 1 assigned book - authored by "The Episcopal Church" but edited by a woman. Rating: Very good.

This quarter's classes all made a respectable showing (none assign only books by men), but the award clearly goes to... Preaching!

Tune in again in January to see who will win Beth's "Winter Quarter Gender Balance Award!"


Hope said...

I was pleasantly surprised to find that both books for my small group spirituality class are written by women. One book of six is by a woman for Practicing Ecclesiology. None of the seven books for Anglican Worship are by women, nor are any of the four reserve readings. (The syllabus does list two books editted by women among the four recommended works.) Cannon Law doesn't get to play for me this quarter because it has no books, just a collection of readings. I'm afraid I am not giving out a gender balance award this quarter because my classes do not pass.

Beth said...

Let me think...

Things the church takes seriously: liturgy, canon law, analyzing parishes.

Things the church hasn't ever been wildly comfortable with (not for centuries, anyway): healing prayer.

Oh! Look! Look which one women get to talk about!


Hope said...

Even more interesting was tonight's conversation when one of my classmates mentioned this unbalance in class....and was met with defensiveness, ignorance and a charge to go find it for herself. Classic response: "I didn't consider gender or race when I chose these books." Really? From a place of privledge you ignored dynamics of oppression? Well, that's new and different.

Lorna said...

healing prayer - it's precisely because it IS important that women take it seriously. :)

my sad experience in seminary is that some of the professors just don't read widely enough. I know that's what they accuse us of - but that has to reflect their choice of recommended reading.

The fact that a book is written by a woman (or a man) does not make it better but we can expect that by reading more works by different authors, genders and social backgrounds we can get a wider scope.

I read a most interesting book recently- not sure if you have - it's by a man and it really made me think

It's called Sarah Laughed: Women's voices in the OT (Trevor Davies) - he takes a look at some well known narratives in the Bible from the viewpoint of women.

Have you read it?

Beth said...

Lorna: I *think* that I've read parts of Sarah Laughed. I'm fairly sure of it. But I couldn't tell you which they were. If it's what I'm thinking of, I recall being moderately impressed by it, but I can't be sure right now.