The Christian Feminist Podcast, Episode 122: The Passion of Perpetua and Felicity

Marie Hause, Katie Grubbs, and guest Ana Kelsey-Powell discuss The Passion of Perpetua and Felicity. Topics include martyrdom in relation to gender, suffering, and motherhood.

Listen here

An online version of the The Passion of Perpetua and Felicity can be found here. Quotes in the episode are from the Heffernan translation

Knowing

  • summary of The Passion of Perpetua and Felicity
  • where we encountered the text and why it’s important

Reading

  • Perpetua’s fourth vision, in which she says “I became man”
    • Pomponius conducting her to the arena, through a wilderness; the stripping of her clothes, revealing a male body; detailed description of the hand-to-hand fighting; Perpetua’s triumph
    • What are the implications of this scene?
  • the way the text presents martyrdom
    • What is the purpose of martyrdom? Personal glorification or evangelism
    • Witness as heart of martyrdom
    • Cynical lens
    • Understanding witness accounts as true “seed of the church” – Tertullian
  • family and motherhood in connection to martyrdom
    • Christian community/identity vs. biological family; queer interpretations
    • motherhood vs. martyrdom; devaluing of suffering in motherhood
    • the text’s lactation motif

Passing On

 

Image: detail from the Menologion of Basil II

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