Women's History
Book Reviews


The Book of Goddesses & Heroines
Patricia Monaghan, Llewellyn Publications, St. Paul, Minnesota, 1990

This is the second edition of this book, originally published in 1985. Over one thousand goddesses are listed - a number which seems a bit overwhelming. I would have liked fewer entries and fuller information about the cultures which created the divinities; for example, ways in which their worship influenced their culture. Nonetheless, the book provides a necessary list for those interested in uncovering all aspects of female historical experience. In ancient history, the importance of goddesses and the power of their priestesses may correlate with the relatively positive status of women. An understanding of goddess religions also provides a look at the spiritual experiences of women apart from their worship within the dominate patriarchal religions.

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