Gender issues in the study of ancient Gnosticism
DOI link for Gender issues in the study of ancient Gnosticism
Gender issues in the study of ancient Gnosticism book
The outer organizational structure of Gnostic groups generally mirrored the structures of the cultures in which they operated and those of the ancient world generally. Within the belief systems of the many groups forming what is known loosely as "Gnosticism" there is a tendency to dualism, much more strongly delineated in some outlooks than others: light and darkness; insight and ignorance/error; male and female. Early work on gender issues in ancient Gnosticism can be found in small sections in seminal works like Kurt Rudolph's Gnosis, while Elaine Pagels's The Gnostic Gospels is among the earliest and best known to deal in more detail with the subject. For Gnostic groups, bringing together male and female and restoring the complete person parallels the restoration of the light from darkness, although both ideas are not without difficulty as to what one does with the darkness or with the female in restoring the incomplete male.