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Augustines Image of Women Saint Augustine was born in North Africa then a province of the Roman Empire in 354 AD He became a teacher of rhetoric was converted to a religious life and became bishop of Hippo in 395 Saint Augustines writings were one of the most influential and widely consulted doctrines of his time and even today his works The City Of God and The Confessions are widely read Augustines life before converting was filled with turmoil sin and confusion but in the end he willingly succumbed to Gods will and became a Christian Perhaps it was due to his immoral life that was filled with sexual sin that caused Augustine to have a very conservative view on woman In both The City Of God and The Confessions there are many different images of women Augustine believes women should be subordinate men are to care for and protect a woman and his ideals of feminine virtue are conservative and religious After his conversion to Christianity Augustines position on sexuality and women turned extreme Since it was not until two years time I was to obtain her I sought -- being not so much a lover of marriage as a slave to lust -- procured another women Confessions Book VI Before being converted Augustine would engage in sinful acts such as sex with other women when he was married and joining different religious cults Augustines image of women is one that is very male-orientated Augustine believes completely in the ideas of male domination and superiority Thou hast granted to man that from others he should come to conclusions as to himself and that he should believe many things concerning himself on the authority of feeble women Confessions Book I Feeble women this is Augustines image of women that they are weak and frail and incapable of anything Augustine believes that men have absolute authority over everyone and that they are naturally
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