Date Thesis Awarded
Honors Thesis -- Open Access
Bachelors of Arts (BA)
Presbyterianism’s founder, John Knox, wrote his infamous The First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women in 1558 arguing against female monarchs. Despite early modern Presbyterianism’s restriction of women’s formal religious roles, women used often conflicting rhetoric from the pulpit to negotiate a degree of power and autonomy. Rather than only being passive members of the Presbyterian Church, women often played an active role in the development and expansion of Presbyterianism between 1550 and 1690. This thesis will demonstrate how a study of women’s interactions with the Presbyterian Church outside of the kirk sessions, namely in their public, written and private lives, shows women as independent decision makers and involved participants in their religion throughout the first century and a half of Presbyterianism.
Mackey, Lydia, "The Female Kirk: Women's Participation in the Early Scottish Presbyterian Church" (2021). Undergraduate Honors Theses. William & Mary. Paper 1647.