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No Silent WitnessThe Eliot Parsonage Women and Their Unitarian World$
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Cynthia Tucker

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195390209

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195390209.001.0001

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The Unitarian Universe

The Unitarian Universe

(p.3) 1 The Unitarian Universe
No Silent Witness

Cynthia Grant Tucker (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes a culture of contradictions where religiously liberal people tend to be socially conservative, where the pulpits' descriptions of truth conflict with the daily reality known in the pews, and where parsonage females bear the brunt of these incongruities. Unitarian women who treasure their freedom from punishing Calvinist creeds and who revel in stretching their minds as they study the Bible in light of their reason and conscience complain of being betrayed by the pulpits' blind‐sided optimism and coldly cerebral sermons. Increasingly, too, they protest that the cult of domestic religion and separate spheres, as canonized by Horace Bushnell, violates the Unitarian values of equity and inclusion. The double standard of authorship and separatist ideology distort and diminish the women's posthumous reputations.

Keywords:   social conservatives, reason and conscience, equity and inclusion, domestic religion, Horace Bushnell, separate spheres, double standard, authorship

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