Recently Metacrock's blog had a series on kephale. He gives a good literature survey. Next, I found Wayne Grudem's article here quite interesting. This article seems to prove both sides inconclusive. The Mennonite Brethren Forum has a discussion on headship and women's leadership. Here is an Open Letter To Egalitarians with a consideration of Linda Belleville's 2001 response.
Probably the best article on headship that I have read is this one in Christianity Today, Headship with a Heart. Here is an excerpt,
- "Few phrases are more explosive in our culture than male headship. Feminists claim that patriarchy (the affirmation of male authority over females) is the basis for most social pathology and for virtually all domestic violence, child abuse, and sexual assault. In their groundbreaking book on domestic violence, sociologists R. Emerson and Russell Dobash assert "the seeds of wife beating lie in the subordination of females and in their subjection to male authority and control. This relationship has been institutionalized in the structure of the patriarchal family" (Violence Against Wives: The Case Against the Patriarchy, Free Press, 1983). Others attack patriarchy even more virulently, calling it a "death sentence" for society (Russ Fink, Stopping Rape: A Challenge to Men, New Society, 1993)."
I was once in a position where this discussion was of utmost importance, when I received a visit from a woman in a church I was attending many years ago. She had suffered physical abuse in the home, which a medical doctor attested to in court. The elders of the church had reprimanded her for her behaviour in not being subordinate and pleasing her husband.
However, it is interesting to read how Tracy then goes on to reclaim the concept of headship, basically by distancing it from authority and focusing on protection. This connects closely to a theme in Aristotle that I have been following. That is the role of the father as the 'soter'. This idea deserves a post in itself.
I shall close with this thought.
- So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. Matthew 7:12 (ESV)
I am going to add a few more links here once in a while.
What Men Give Up at Christian Egalitarians