Original Research - Special Collection: UP Faculty of Theology Centenary Volume One

We’ll make a man out of you yet: The masculinity of Peter in the book of Acts

Eric Stewart
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 72, No 4 | a3433 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v72i4.3433 | © 2016 Eric Stewart | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 12 April 2016 | Published: 17 November 2016

About the author(s)

Eric Stewart, Associate Professor of Religion, Augustana College, Rock Island, Illinois, USA; Department of New Testament Studies, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa, United States


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Abstract

According to scholars of masculinity studies, manhood is won or lost through the performance of gender-based expectations. In any given culture, masculinities exist in hierarchal relationships. The author of the book of Acts shows Peter demonstrating elite masculine performances in the narrative of Acts. Through Peter’s self-control, and the lack of self-control on the part of those who oppose him, his persuasive, public speech and his ability to control others in the text, Peter exhibits a masculinity that contradicts early portraits of Peter found in 1 Corinthians and the gospels of Matthew, Mark and John. Peter is not overcome by other people in Acts, and he demonstrates a masculinity that is complicit with the types of masculinities prized by the Romans and often considered out of the reach of foreigners.

Keywords

Masculinity; Peter; Acts

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