Posted by: Ken Brown | September 8, 2009

Five Influential Female Authors

There has been a ton of discussion lately (started by April DeConick) about the underrepresentation of women among Bibliobloggers and in Biblical Studies generally (and apparently the problem also extends to the recent Top 100 Church Blogs, which includes only three women). I’ve been hesitant to jump into the debate but for the record, I can’t imagine anyone denying that there are inborn differences between the sexes, but to what extent those rather than social pressures are responsible for the discrepancy is more than I know. To my mind the point of egalitarianism is not that “we’re all the same” but that everyone should have the right to be themselves. To whatever extent women have been discouraged or prevented from doing so by our action or inaction, we should be ashamed.

The least we can do is highlight and support those women who have produced good scholarship, and Mike Koke’s excellent meme is a small token of that. He asks that we list the five female scholars who have most influenced our own scholarship. Here are my five, in alphabetical order:

Margaret Barker especially The Gate of Heaven.

Mary Coloe especially God Dwells with Us.

Susan Niditch especially War in the Hebrew Bible.

Marianne Meye Thompson especially The Promise of the Father.

Gale Yee especially Jewish Feasts and the Gospel of John.

Also: Barbara Aland, Adele Berlin, Donna Nolan Fewell, Dorothy Lee, Judith Lieu, Gail O’Day and of course April DeConick herself.

Mike has also collected responses here.



  1. Thank you for sharing. I agree that it is important for women to spread the word of God. Why not include all people in spreading the word? If we only allowed men to spread God’s word we are limiting ourselves. Twice the people the greater spread of the Glory of God,

  2. […] Ken Brown:  Margaret Barker, Mary Coloe, Susan Niditch, Marianne Meye Thompson, Gale Yee […]

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