Journal of Interdisciplinary Feminist Thought


In this paper I aim to recover the revolutionary force of Mary’s perpetual virginity as a model for Christian discipleship in two stages: first, I search the writings of Ambrose of Milan and Augustine of Hippo as well as the medieval hagiographic tradition of virgin martyr tales for resources which recognize the possible concurrence of virginity and sexual activity, given that the sexual activity in question lacks full consent; second, I push the tradition beyond itself to reach toward a new understanding of virginity which can admit the possible coincidence of virginity and fully consensual sexual activity