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Also A Mother: Work and Family as Theological Dilemma [Paperback]

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Item description for Also A Mother: Work and Family as Theological Dilemma by Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore...

This book suggests that beneath the everyday scuffles over gender roles and child care lies a religious crisis of work and love. As a professor, the author asks of Christian teaching, "How can it respond better to women and men who want to work in fulfilling ways and to love in intimate relationships?" As a mother, she insists that such teaching must at last take seriously what mothers think, feel and desire.

Publishers Description

As the twentieth century closes, the cry for equality between the sexes is provoking unprecedented conflicts between women and men in the workplace and in the family. Women of all colors and classes continue to carry out an enormous amount of indispensable, unremunerated caring labor, which at once undergirds and is peripheral to human life--as men have defined it--and therefore without value. Also a Mother protests this definition of work and value, and claims that beneath the everyday scuffles over gender roles and child care lies an essential religious crisis of work and love.

Drawing on her situation as seminary professor and mother of three sons, Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore argues that Christian ideals of motherly self-sacrifice and fatherly hard work, as they have been interpreted by church tradition and promoted in society at large, not only fail the lives of many people today, but misrepresent both the intent of God's creation and the promise of the gospel message itself. She asks: How might theological doctrines of love, self-sacrifice creation, procreation, vocation, and community better respond to women and men who want to work in fulfilling ways and to love in intimate relationships including those that involve raising children? To answer adequately, theology must seriously entertain what mothers think, feel, desire, and know bodily, in a way that it has failed to do thus far.

The Christian feminist maternal theology that Miller-McLemore proposes challenges the mores of a society that has selectively divided the burdens and rewards of family and work along gender lines, calls for a rereading of biblical and theological traditions that have been wrongly used to uphold this division, and reclaims the values of caring labor for both men and women.

From Publishers Weekly
A professor at Chicago Theological Seminary and as a mother, Miller-McLemore has taken on the theological complexities of a major struggle in womanhood, that of vocation versus maternity. The first half of her study traces the silences about, and the male-dominated interpretations of, maternal nurturing as they are employed by many feminists active today in theology, economics and psychology. The second half shares from a more personal level Miller-McLemore's own struggles with the tensions between ``creation and procreation'' and offers ideas and changes that families, congregations, communities and even governments can work toward; for as she points out, ``A theology that does not make room for the demands, responsibilities and joys of relating to children as a fundamental part of life is a theology on the verge of its own demise.'' While this book is theologically an important first, its readers may feel frustrated that it points to the ideal of the village in rearing children rather than to the more realistic problems of a mobile society. (June)

Citations And Professional Reviews
Also A Mother: Work and Family as Theological Dilemma by Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -

  • Publishers Weekly - 05/09/1994

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Abingdon Press
Pages   216
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.99" Width: 6.01" Height: 0.63"
Weight:   0.76 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jun 1, 1994
Publisher   Abingdon Church Supplies
ISBN  0687110203  
ISBN13  9780687110209  

Availability  144 units.
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More About Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore is E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of Pastoral Theology at Vanderbilt University Divinity School and Graduate Department of Religion. Winner of a prestigious Henry Luce III Fellow in Theology award, she is a national and international leader in pastoral and practical theologies and widely recognized for research on families, women, and children. Her publications include Feminist and Womanist Pastoral Theology (1999) and an upcoming collection of essays, Christian Theology in Practice: Discovering a Discipline (2012).

Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore has an academic affiliation as follows - Vanderbilt University, USA Vanderbilt University Divinity School Vande.

Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Blackwell Companions to Religion
  2. Families and Faith Series
  3. Practices of Faith

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology > General
2Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology
3Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Womens Studies > Feminist Theory
4Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Womens Studies > General
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Clergy > Church Institutions & Organizations
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Feminist
7Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > General
8Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology

Christian Product Categories
Books > Christian Living > Relationships > Family Concerns

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Reviews - What do customers think about Also A Mother: Work and Family as Theological Dilemma?

Not Helpful If you are looking for "Meat" on the topic.  Feb 20, 2006
I was very disappointed with this book. If didn't reference scripture or history as much as I was expecting. It was basically a feminist validating herself with a few verses throughout the book. The flow was horrible as the book went in circles. When I got done reading the book (was very hard to finish), I couldn't help but think it was a waste of time reading.

If you are looking for meat I would suggest "Balancing Act". It is much more helpful if you are a Christian woman looking for meat on the subject of career and family.
Feminist and Mother DO go together.  Aug 28, 2000
One of the most honest looks at the spiritual journey of motherhood that I have read to date, Bonnie discusses the theological work of love, care, family and those most marginalized in our society: our children. While the author advocates for a model of shared parenting between mothers and fathers, she does not thoroughly address enough the issue of balance for mothers, nor share enough of her own story or personal struggle in motherhood within this text. The places where Bonnie does include her journey and struggle do make this text engaging and easy to connect with for mothers and others who share responsibility for caring of children. A must read for anyone involved in Christian ministry. Wish more Catholic priests woule take a look at this one to get a better handle on the theology of motherhood, as mothers are probably the most theologically invisible persons in some Christian settings. Lifting mothers from the limitations of oppresive commentary, Bonnie brings dignity and validity to the vocation of motherhood and celebrates the child in her writing. A great gift for mothers, a must read for women's studies students, professors, pastoral ministers, and a great insight for husbands, fathers and all who are in relationship with mothers who care for our most precious children.

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