Women as Scapegoats

Society continues to separate women out as scapegoats by consigning them to gender-role stereotypes – the virgin, the shrew, the wife, the widow, the whore, the witch, and many more. Such categorizations work to dehumanize women by reducing them to one-dimensional caricatures and forcing them to play limiting and (usually male-) prescribed roles in the world. Functionally, these strip women of their inherent worth as uniquely gifted persons made in the image of God and downplay female complexity and individuality by implying that women are interchangeable. They make it easier to scapegoat women for the sins of men and the problems of society. Literature from every century has played into these negative stereotypes; even the Bible sometimes makes use of such misogynistic language. Prophetic and apocalyptic literature is filled with imagery about “whores” that perpetuates demeaning ideas about women from their culture. 

From “Scapegoats: The Gospel Through the Eyes of Victims” by Jennifer Garcia Bashaw – Fortress Press