To what extent is the Bible a ‘patriarchal’ book?

The Bible is a highly influential book but should it be if it is regarded as ‘patriarchal’? Stereotypically women are viewed as the weaker sex because supposedly they are responsible for household chores and the looking after of children. However, men are viewed as stronger because they are responsible for providing for the family. Is the Bible to blame for this? Is this due to the Bible being ‘patriarchal’? The Bible has so much influence over the world, for example some construct their moral and ethical codes around it (Barton 2010). The Bible is so deeply ingrained in Western psyche that people are able to use it to justify the inferiority of women due to its divine authority and inerrancy (Davies 2013). Is this okay? It is the 21st Century, surely humanity has developed to be able to treat men and women as equals, to treat them both with equal respect, without having to refer to a book written hundreds of years ago by predominately male authors. Therefore, the purpose of this essay is to critically discuss the Bible’s patriarchal nature, with reference to its non-patriarchal characteristics to make a grounded and balanced argument as to determine the extent of the Bible as a ‘patriarchal’ book.

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