Behold the Man

Behold the Man : Jesus and Greco-Roman Masculinity

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In this book, Colleen Conway looks at the construction of masculinity in New Testament depictions of Jesus. She argues that the New Testament writers necessarily engaged the predominant gender ideology of the Roman empire, whether consciously or unconsciously. Although the notion of what constituted ideal masculinity in Greek and Roman cultures certainly pre-dated the Roman Empire, the emergence of the Principate concentrated this gender ideology on the figure of the emperor. Indeed, critical to the success of the empire was the portrayal of the emperor as the ideal man and the Roman citizen as one who aspired to be the same. Any person or power that was held up alongside the emperor as another source of authority would be assessed in terms of the cultural values represented in this Roman image of the 'manly man.' Conway details how the New Testament writings reflect different approaches to the issue of Jesus' gender identity, including resistance to, accommodation to, and imitation of, imperial masculinity. The themes that emerge from her study include the relationship between divinity and masculinity in the Roman world and in depictions of Jesus; the role of the body in relation to gender identity; and belief in Jesus as a means of achieving a more ideal form of masculinity. Conway's work will be of interest to the broad range of biblical scholars who are interested in gender critical issues and in the emergence of Christianity in the Roman more

Product details

  • Hardback | 272 pages
  • 168 x 244 x 20mm | 520g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 019532532X
  • 9780195325324
  • 2,021,520

Review quote

Behold the Man shows that gender has been a central concern in representations of Jesus from the beginning... Conway's study is important because it reveals the complex strategies of musculinization employed by New Testament authors... [her] discussion of how masculinity was transmitted from culture to individual is an especially welcome addition scholarship. * L. Stephanie Cobb, Church History * This beautifully written book is at the same time intellectually stimulating and convicning, and ideologically provocative * Halvor Moxnes, Biblical Interpretation * ...much that is well argued and evidenced and important. * F. Gerald Downing, Journal for the Study of the New Testament, Booklist 2009 Vol 31.5 * ...well structured, engagingly written... a thoughtful, well-researcged study which gathers together succinctly a good range of material to make its case... It presents its material well and persuasively. * Clive Marsh, The Journal of Theological Studies 60:2 *show more

About Colleen Conway

Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Seton Hall Universityshow more

Table of contents

1.Introduction: Jesus and Gender ; 2.How to Be a Man in the Greco-Roman World ; 3.Constructing the Lives of Divine Men: Divus Augustus, Philos Moses, and Philostratuss Apollonius ; 4.The Unmanned Christ and the Manly Christian in the Pauline Tradition ; 5.The Markan Jesus as Manly Martyr? ; 6.The Matthean Jesus: Mainstream and Marginal Masculinities ; 7.The Lukan Jesus and the Imperial Elite ; 8.He Must Increase: the Divine Masculinity of the Johannine Jesus ; 9.Ruling the Nations with a Rod of Iron: Masculinity and Violence in Revelation ; 10.Conclusion: The Multiple Masculinities of Jesus ; Index of Primary Texts ; List of Abbreviations ; Bibliographyshow more

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8 ratings
4.12 out of 5 stars
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3 25% (2)
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