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The Gnostic Gospels Essay & Criticism

This Study Guide consists of approximately 85 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Gnostic Gospels.
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Critical Overview

Critical response to Pagels's The Gnostic Gospels varied from admiration for her writing abilities to accusations that she was inaccurate in numerous aspects of the book. B. Cobbey Crisler's article in The Christian Science Monitor calls Pagels's efforts "refreshing" and "a challenge, especially when 'gnosticism' was regarded by its own adherents to be for the initiated only."

Henry Chadwick, writing in the Times Literary Supplement a decade after the book's publication, compliments Pagels's writing skills, noting that she is a "gifted, clever communicator" and has "an enviable gift for writing easily." He accuses her, though, of lacking "full rigour," particularly when she attempts to show that the Gnostics were sympathetic to women's religious roles and that their exclusion from the orthodoxy deprived Christianity of a particular richness. "But for most readers that will matter little," he laments.

Kathleen McVey, in Theology Today, recognizes that Pagels's book is geared...

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This section contains 704 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Gnostic Gospels Study Guide
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The Gnostic Gospels from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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