Writer Can Decdie
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Christianity and women
Claiming their own space: Australian women missionaries in Korean, 1891-1900
This article asserts that the very first group of Australian women missionaries arrived in Korea in 1891 and this group represented the Presbyterian women's missionary Union of Victoria. Pioneering work of this group was interrupted by the tension that was created between them and the male members of cleric authority. In this article, author tried to investigate the disputed that rose between the opposite genders. This dispute continued for several years that not only become an issue for this missionary but also served as the root cause of creating chaos for many other missionaries such as North American missionaries. One of the significant concerns that have been argued in this article is the involvement of Australian women missionaries in general public affairs and disputes. This was the main issue that put a torch light on the patriarchal order, and it was the time when women got space in the public affairs as well. Another major thing that grasps attention of reader is the spark of Australian women missionaries that directly challenged male-centered society. This article also identifies various distinctive characteristics of Australian women’s missionary work and motives.
By having a profound insight, I could say that there was great conflict in the ideology of males and females who were preaching about the Christian religion in old ages. This article is indicating towards the conception of feminism as it has been seen that three Australian women landed in 1891 in Korean for taking side of women and claimed that women like men should be valued for playing a significant role in religious and public affairs. I have witnessed a great contradiction in the religious ideology of women and men of that time. At that time, it happened for the very first time that women directly challenged dominant male society, and this thing was almost indigestible for men of that time. Specifically religious affairs used to be led by the male preachers and they were directly challenged by the Australian women missionaries when they claimed for some space. From this reading, it has been cleared that during late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries women used to express their discontent openly against males of that time who used to take all the important decisions. It was the time when women missionaries started giving their point of views despite thinking about the views of men upon a certain issue.
Korean Bible Women’s success: Using the Anbang Network and the Religious authority of the Mudang
In this article, it has been asserted that work of evangelization of Korean Bible Women was a great success because they seek help of women's Anbang and also followed instructions of many other prominent female religious key figures in mudang. This article also spots a light on the closeness of Bible Women with Korean Women; the former shared its new ideology about the western Protestant ideas by entering into the women quarters. New paradigms about the role of women in society were discussed by these two groups as well. Work that was done throughout this period seems to be Korean despite the conservative Confucian milieu that restricted activities of women. This article also appreciates culturally rich work being done by Bible Women in Korea that gives overview of the daily life of women of Anbang. Bible Women was performing the same task that used to be previously performed by mudang for centuries. Many experts have claimed that similarity of function in the work of both mudang and Bible Women, had given more Korean look rather than Western, to Christian work of Bible Women. Many functional similarities between the group of females, mudang and Korean Bible Women have been spotted in this reading as well.
In this article, I could see Korean Bible Women as one of the pioneer group of nineteenth century who raised voice for securing rights of females in atmosphere where there were many restrictions for women. Females were not having freedom as it could be observed today. It has been seen that women evangelists started teaching women in Korean churches. These women were regarded strong enough to educate other women and raised voice for the rights of females. While studying this article, I came across many functions that have been performed by Bible Women who used to lead prayers, visit homes of parishioners and taking care of sick people. Another important thing that I have observed in this article is the similarity between the functioning of Bible Women and Korean Mudang. People who used to seek guidance of shamans used to explore power of spirits specifically. While reading this article, I could feel the frustration of females of that time and could see that sacrifices and efforts of the two groups who were struggling to have common goals won the battle.
Another thing that held my attention was the cooperation among women who supported these two groups for claiming their rights. It could be witnessed that there were many issues and hurdles that Bible Women faced, when Protestant Christianity was looked upon with suspicion and parents started feeling insecure for their daughters who wanted to be a part of this religious group. So as a whole, it could be concluded that for claiming rights of women specifically in a society where religiously women were not given much space above mentioned two groups struggled hard for rights of females and succeeded at the end as well in bringing about a healthy change.
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