A Companion to Anabaptism
and Spiritualism, 1521-1700.
Among specific topics are devotional strategies in everyday life: laity's interaction with saints in the north during the 14th and 15th centuries, the appeal and survival of Anabaptism
in early modern Germany, urban funeral practices in the Baltic Sea region, religiosity and readiness for the Reformation among late medieval burghers in Stockholm around 1420-1570, and resistance to the Reformation in 16th-century Finland.
The book is divided into two parts: The Early Church through the Magisterial Reformation; and Sixteenth-Century Anabaptism
to the Twenty-first Century.
The book's percipient and fascinating analysis of the origins of anabaptism
in Europe, including Mennonite and Amish sects, highlights sectarian differences within the Protestant Reformation and how questions of political power shaped and sustained those differences.
While declining as an identifiable Lutheran group, some of its theological tenets influenced Protestantism and Anabaptism
generally, inspiring the Anglican priest John Wesley to begin the Methodist movement and Alexander Mack to begin the Brethren movement.
However, she notes the influence of 20thcentury Mennonite theologians and historians such as Harold Bender, whose interpretations of Mennonite theology and history focused on issues of yieldedness and non-resistance rather than on the "socially radical nature of early Anabaptism
," (27) which could have led Mennonites to more actively challenge workplace inequities.
Her monograph, Baptism, Brotherhood, and Belief in Reformation Germany: Anabaptism
and Lutheranism, 1525-1585, has just been published by Oxford University Press.
achieves the elusive unity of theoria and praxis, then its seeing may be judged in light of its doing and vice versa.
Part 2 deals with contemporary theological economics in the different Christian traditions, such as Roman Catholicism, Anglicanism, Eastern Orthodox Christianity, Anabaptism
, Pentecostalism, and the wide range of Reformed theology.
For what emerges from the book is a sense that the Amish are not a monolith, and that despite their roots in sixteenth-century Anabaptism
and a seventeenth-century schism, Amish affiliations--of which there are now forty in America--do not agree about what it means to live in an increasingly modernized world while maintaining a distinct religious identity.
While his work on Christian ethics helped define Anabaptism
to an audience far outside the Mennonite Church, he is also remembered for his long-term sexual harassment and abuse of women.
Particular essays analyze the metaphysics of gender, the historiographic import of patriarchy in studying early modern Europe, demonic possessions and gender in late medieval culture, gender and family in early modern German Anabaptism
, male witches and masculinity in early modern Finnish witchcraft trials, gendered suicide in Sweden, among other topics.