QUIVERFULL: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement

by Jacquelyn Lewis

A journalist’s look at an ultra-conservative, ultra-patriarchal vangelical Protestant movement.

In this engrossing look at the evangelical Protestant “Quiverfull” movement, we learn that the conservative patriarchal group takes its name from Psalm 127, which states: “Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.” (In other words, “Want to be in God’s army? Start having babies—as many as God can give you.”)

Stripped of equality, Quiverfull wives are servants of the home and of their husbands. Having an “unsubmissive” wife means a man can’t control his home and is therefore unfit for church leadership. The patriarchy movement doesn’t allow women to have friendships with other women, as the husband should be the only source of emotional support, and it even encourages young women to not merely save themselves for marriage but to save their first kiss for the marriage altar. Skillfully reported by journalist Kathryn Joyce, Quiverfull has echoes of The Handmaid’s Tale. Unfortunately, it’s not fiction.

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