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Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement Paperback – May 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Beacon Press (May 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807010731
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807010730
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #472,466 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Journalist Joyce has conducted a groundbreaking investigation of a little-known movement among Christian evangelicals that rejects birth control and encourages couples to have as many children as possible. The movement, which takes its name from a verse in Psalm 127, advocates a retreat from society and a rejection of government policies that encourage equal rights for women, pregnancy prevention and an individualistic ethic. Quiverfull families share with more mainline Protestant groups, such as the Southern Baptist Convention, a belief that wives should submit to their husbands. But the group goes further by insisting that children be homeschooled and daughters forgo a college education in favor of early marriage and childbearing. The book probes a San Antonio–based ministry called Vision Forum, which began as a Christian homeschooling resource and now promotes "biblical patriarchy" through seminars and retreats. Members of the movement use militaristic metaphors and see themselves waging a war to win back the culture and rescue American society. The book lacks an in-depth historical account of the movement's connections to 19th- and 20th-century American fundamentalism or its accommodation with modernity, especially its heavy use of Internet blogs. Yet future historians and journalists will owe Joyce a debt of gratitude for her foray into this still nascent religious group. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Engrossing . . . Skillfully reported by journalist Kathryn Joyce, Quiverfull has echoes of The Handmaid's Tale. Unfortunately, it's not fiction.—Rebecca Braverman, Bust

"An invaluable contribution to understanding how religious fundamentalism still stands in the way of sexual justice . . . An urgent call to dismantle fundamentalism's hold on our politics, and our policy-making."—Sarah Posner, American Prospect online

"Insightful . . . A call to reexamine our own beliefs . . . The issues Joyce's book raises are fundamental to our identity as human beings, and as Christians. Perhaps they could stand some reexamination."—Elrena Evans, Christianity Today

"[An] excellent, frightening new book . . . Quiverfull merits wide readership."—Edd Doerr, The Voice of Reason: Journal of Americans for Religious Liberty

"Riveting and deeply disturbing. This important book shines a light on a corner of the Christian right that has taken misogyny to sadomasochistic extremes, and reveals the sexual anxieties so often underlying modern fundamentalism."—Michelle Goldberg, author of Kingdom Coming

"Joyce gives us a first-ever glimpse into the Christian patriarchy movement, and her riveting reporting makes it all the scarier. If you've been feeling complacent about women's status, read this book!—Barbara Ehrenreich

"A groundbreaking investigation . . . Future historians and journalists will owe Joyce a debt of gratitude for her foray into this still nascent religious group."—Publishers Weekly

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Customer Reviews

In this book, Kathryn Joyce has produced an example of top-notch journalism and muckracking.
Alexander
The truth is generally found somewhere in the middle of all topics, and there is very little middle ground presented in this book.
D. Mcmurry
Something else I really appreciate about this book ~ Quiverfull puts the whole movement on display all at once.
Vyckie D. Garrison

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

150 of 158 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer TOP 500 REVIEWER on May 17, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Quiverfull / 978-0-8070-1073-0

I consider myself to be a homeschooling success story, as I was homeschooled for several formative years of my education, and now happily hold two college degrees and a good job - and indeed, I am fully open to the possibility of homeschooling my own hypothetical children. Going into "Quiverfull", I held some concerns that author Kathryn Joyce might fail to clarify that the type of people her research centers on - many of whom "homeschool" (see note below) - are NOT typical examples of the homeschooling community at large. However, Joyce is an eminently fair writer, and frequently emphasizes that the movement she studies is "fringe" in most all respects - fringe Americans, fringe Christians, and fringe homeschoolers.

[[NOTE: Homeschooling families tend to be sensitive to accusations of isolationism and indoctrination, in large part because the public figures of homeschooling are often comprised of the "fringe" element - whereas the "normal" families who see homeschooling as one of many valid education options to choose from tend to be more interested in quietly getting on with teaching their children properly. In much the same way that there are educational private schools and indoctrinational private schools, such as there also educational homeschooling families to balance the indoctrinational one. The best parsing of the issue I have seen so far is the growing online meme to refer to these methods respectively as "private schooling", "private churching", "home schooling", and "home churching", to designate where the training is taking place, and what the training is focusing on.]]

Divided into three parts, "Quiverfull" carefully parses the duties and burdens on women within the Quiverfull movement - as wives, mothers, and daughters.
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112 of 123 people found the following review helpful By Sheila on August 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover
My husband and I homeschooled our children for a total of 13 years, and we are familiar with many of the names in this book. We had our first child as a result of stopping birth control to allow God to "plan our family". We attended Jonathan Lindvall's "Bold Parenting" seminar and for a time, subscribed to "Patriarch" magazine. I also have read most of Mary Pride's books. I mention this to show our familiarity with this movement. I feel that this book is extremely well written and readable, and although Joyce obviously has a bias, as mentioned in another review, she mostly allows people's words to speak for themselves without commentary.

The reason I call this book a "must read" for homeschoolers is because you may not be getting an accurate picture of what is going on in your church until it is too late to avoid being sucked in and becoming victims yourselves. The chapters on the Epstein family ("Life in the Garden") and Cheryl Lindsay ("Exiting the Movement") are heart wrenching in describing the destruction that ensued when church discipline was exercised. And in many of these churches, discussing issues of conflict with leadership is labeled "gossip", so you likely will only hear bits and pieces of what is going on...and those who leave are labeled "wolves among the sheep" to discourage people from speaking to them firsthand.

I would have liked to have the author write a chapter on the psychology of what draws people to this movement and as well as more discussion on people who have left and how they recovered and moved on. But all in all, a book worth reading even if you do not agree with the author's opinions.
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358 of 409 people found the following review helpful By Vyckie D. Garrison on March 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The reason I am telling the story of my involvement in the Quiverfull movement, and how I got out ([...]) is because I came across an article on Alternet and read with interest about the people and the teachings which our family had followed for many years. I was kind of amazed that someone on that liberal news site knew about this movement ~ so I posted a comment on the article ~ and that's how I got in touch with Kathryn Joyce, author of Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement.

I pre-ordered the book and as I read it, I kept saying aloud, "I know these people!" All the names were familiar to me ~ Nancy Campbell, Mary Pride, Doug Phillips, Phil Lancaster, R.C. Sproul Jr., Debi Pearl, Anna Sophia Botkins, Jennie Chancey ... "Wow," I thought, "she even interviewed Charles Provan!" I used to own nearly every book mentioned in Quiverfull ~ and, yes ~ I read them all ... starting with The Way Home: Beyond Feminism and Back to Reality, the book which really started the current patriarchy movement that's becoming so popular among homeschoolers. Isn't it interesting that it has mostly been the WOMEN who are writing these books, teaching seminars, and leading other women into this life of subordination?

I really want to just encourage everyone who has been touched by the Quiverfull philosophy in any way to read this book. I wish I could quote the whole thing for you ~ and then sit back and read the comments which would sound something like, "OMFG!" and "Is this stuff for real? ~ People actually believe this and live this way?!!" Yes ~ it's true. The thing is, those of us who followed (and those who are still following) the Quiverfull / patriarchal lifestyle got into it gradually ~ just a little at a time.
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