8. Sex, Gender and Empire: Virgins and Eunuchs in the Ancient Mediterranean World

Jesus and Addiction to Origins - Towards an Anthropocentric Study of Religion - Willi Braun

Willi Braun [+-]
University of Alberta
Willi Braun is a Professor Emeritus in the Department of History and Classics and the Program in Religious Studies at the University of Alberta. He is the former President of the North American Association for the Study of Religion and also the past President of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies. Although a specialist in the writings and social formations of earliest Christianities in the Roman empire, his work also focuses on the methods and theories of the academic study of religion itself. He has published and presented his work widely and served as editor of a variety of books and journals, including his longtime role as editor of Method & Theory in the Study of Religion; most recently, he co-edited Reading J. Z. Smith: Interviews and Essay (Oxford, 2018).

Description

In light of the anti-familial figure of the eunuch-priest and the vestal virgin (both spectacular investments in celibacy), this chapter argues that the oft-supposed centrality and stability of “the family” in Greco-Roman antiquity belongs as much to the realm of ancient and modern desire and mythmaking than to historical reality.

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Citation

Braun, Willi. 8. Sex, Gender and Empire: Virgins and Eunuchs in the Ancient Mediterranean World. Jesus and Addiction to Origins - Towards an Anthropocentric Study of Religion. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. Oct 2020. ISBN 9781781799437. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=39245. Date accessed: 22 Feb 2020 doi: 10.1558/equinox.39245. Oct 2020

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