Jesus and the Hindu Woman: an alternative history of Christianity during the British Raj

Pardon the highfalutin title — well, it’s what I honestly hoped to etch a speck of in my first-ever research term paper, which was done for the Asian Church History course taught by Dr. Ernest Chew, in a semester that had twice as many papers to write as the previous one!

I remember first being fascinated by Hindu culture when I had Indian neighbours as a kid — for example, when seeing that the family used all the unfamiliar utensils we learnt about in our primary school textbooks. Once Sayesha started introducing me to Hindi movies with a carefully crafted diet and crafty encouragement, I was a goner, and eventually made two trips to India (represented by Mumbai, Cuttack and Chennai the first time, and New Delhi, Agra and Jaipur the second) for the best possible reason (weddings!), and consumed a lot of films and food (though I still cannot stomach gulab) here, there and everywhere.

Still places in India I’ve yet to go … forms of transport I’ve yet to take …

So, deciding which country to focus on in the paper was easy — India, la! Next step was what to research on — I wanted the paper to be useful today (though of course any look back at the past has utility, e.g. to identify patterns to avoid/emulate), and since female ‘kingdom development workers’ tend to be restricted to serving women and children, I thought this particular topic might result in helpful historical background for them.

Anyway, thought it could be interesting to share my paper here, in case someone/anyone has some/any feedback on it. Agree, disagree, contend, criticise — I guarantee no pleasing reply, but will be happy to converse courteously. Feel free to ignore me altogether too. And please do remember that this is a look at the British Raj period (1858–1947), so attitudes and behaviour would obviously be different today! I apologise in advance if I give offence with my presumption — it is unintended, and I hope the academese isn’t too insufferable — have decided that at my age, plain speaking is the way to live. Bibliographical footnotes have been transferred to endnotes, and comments to (grey parentheses).

INTRODUCTION

This paper focuses on the Hindu-Christian woman in India during the time of the British Raj, which began when full control over parts of the subcontinent was ceded to the British Crown by the British East India Company in 1858 (via the Government of India Act 1858 passed on August 2), and ended with the granting of independence that created the modern nation in 1947 (via the Indian Independence Act 1947 passed on August 15). Instead of considering Protestant Christianity in India from the viewpoints of invariably male church leaders or western missionaries, whether male or female, this paper gives its attention to the local woman’s point of view, especially in light of the inequalities between the sexes in the prevailing Hindu culture of the time. By amplifying the stories of a key individual from an elite caste, the women of a low caste, and widows (who have a low status no matter their caste) who found a new lease of life and purpose through preaching and teaching the Gospel, it is hoped that an alternative history of the spread and indigenisation of Christianity in India may be presented.

The British Raj period has been chosen because, broadly speaking, it saw much agitation for and actual changes in various communities in part due to the increased influx and influence of western missionaries, whose Pietist and Victorian form of Christianity led them to emphasise moral or right behaviour (as defined by the missionaries themselves) in order to gauge the authenticity of conversion. This approach was also motivated by the fear that conversions were undertaken for material gain that might be obtained through the missionaries. However, as will be described in the paper, the missionaries’ ideas about what was considered proper behaviour did not necessarily correspond with the Indian communities they engaged with, with differing implications.

The “Hindu” affix should be explained at this point. It is possible for a person to be described as being both Hindu and Christian when the term is taken to refer to Indian culture, specifically as it is bound to the concepts of kinship and caste [1], as well as the weight of tradition, though each of these actually originate in ancient religious texts. A short discussion of the two concepts follows, and will be further developed at appropriate points in the paper.

The place of a female in Hindu society can be discerned from the web of kinship ties in which she is enmeshed. As sons are much preferred for the religious merit they yield for their fathers and virtue they endow on their mothers, the birth of a daughter is hardly celebrated and can be a crushing burden for families who cannot hope to afford a dowry, much less the expense of a typical wedding. Female infanticide in impoverished areas was thus prevalent during the British Raj despite being outlawed earlier in 1802. The only ‘escape’ is through marriage, but this was really a transfer of power over the female from one male authority to another — “now she would put her forehead onto the feet of her husband” [2]. Her husband became her god. If he were to die before her, she was considered accursed and condemned to a lifetime of austerity — unless she submitted to the banned practice of sati or widow immolation, which would garner great merit for her deceased husband and honour for her natal family.

Layered across the gender divide is the question of caste. The answer to this question determines who a female can marry and even eat with, and also the expectations she can have for her life within the gender boundaries set. There are four groupings of castes, and the top three “twice born” groups are the Brahman, Kshatriya and Vaishiya, commonly labelled the priests, warriors and merchants, respectively. The bottom fourth “once born” caste group is the Sudra, born to serve those ranked above them. Peoples without caste, the Avarna, and also the Adivasi aboriginal tribes, are ‘untouchable’ for they are polluting or impure to the ‘respectable’ caste groups. It is thought improper behaviour, in fact, utterly immoral to cross the lines defined by caste. During the British Raj, considerations of caste pervaded the lives and behaviour of Indian communities. Spiritual and material matters were inextricably bound in Hindu thinking.

There is one caveat to note — this paper does not share the perspective of anthropologist Louis Dumont in Homo Hierarchicus: Essai sur le Système des Castes (1966), which “gave centrality to an upper-caste, essentialised version of Hinduism and treated it as synonymous with India” [3]. The focus may be on Indian women living under restrictions of gender and caste in a particular period, but their stories should not be taken as being representative of all Indian women across time and the territory.

PANDITA RAMABAI

Pandita Ramabai, one of India’s greatest reformers and intellectuals, is not widely known today for two possible reasons — she was a Christian convert from an elite caste and a widow of uncertain status, even as she wore her love for her people on her sleeve and wore herself out for them. By tracing the arc of her life and the struggles she faced in moving towards a personal knowledge of Christ and reaching out to lives in despair, a picture of Christianity in India through the eyes of the Hindu woman may be fleshed out.

Childhood

Ramabai Dongre Medhavi (1858–1922) was born into the highly respected Chitpavan Brahman caste. Her father, Anant Shastri Dongre (1795–1874), was from Pune in the state of Maharashtra and a kind man of great learning. Already widowed when Ramabai’s mother was given to him in marriage at nine years of age (This was a typical practice. According to a set of Hindu laws known as the Manusmriti or Laws of Manu, a high-caste girl should rightly be married between the ages of eight and twelve.), he renamed his bride Lakshmibai and after her daily household labours were done, set about teaching her the sacred language of Sanskrit and the religious lore contained in the Puranas, even in the face of vociferous opposition from his Brahman peers to female education. The family set up a quiet forest home, where Ramabai was born on April 23, 1858. She was Anant and Lakshmibai’s sixth child and only the third to survive.

In the year of Ramabai’s birth, the family found themselves in dire straits. They had been drained dry of resources by the stream of pilgrims who went to Anant for religious instruction, as “the Hindu value system prescribed hospitality as a sacred duty” [4]. Hence, the family began traversing India, visiting the shrines that encrusted the multifarious landscape and scraping together a living by reciting the Puranas for pilgrims. Lakshmibai painstakingly passed on to Ramabai her knowledge of Sanskrit and the Puranas, and the daughter proved to surpass the mother. Ramabai was eventually able to “recite eighteen thousands verses of these sacred texts. She could also reason her way through the texts with the logical expertise of a scholar.” [5]

Celebrity and Infamy

In 1874, when Ramabai was sixteen, her parents starved to death and her sister followed them a year later. For the next four years, she and her older brother, Srinivas, “walked more than four thousand miles on foot without any sort of comfort … sometimes going without food … from the south to the north as far as Kashmir, and then … to Calcutta in 1878.” [6] It was in this city in the state of West Bengal that their fortunes improved dramatically. Ramabai was universally feted for her effortless eruditeness and lightning quick thinking, and a council of pandits bestowed on her the titles of Pandita (“wise teacher”) and Saraswati (“goddess of learning”). Both she and Srinivas were in great demand as speakers. Her first encounter with Christianity was at a gathering in Calcutta, but she was not impressed with the apparent Anglophila on display and recoiled from the ‘polluting’ sharing of food. Srinivas died from cholera on May 8, 1880 and, apart from suffering the grief of his loss, Ramabai was in danger of scandal, being without the safe shelter of a male protector.

Ramabai’s next move shocked her Brahman admirers. Half a year after her brother’s death, she married his friend Babu Bepin Behari Das Medhavi, a highly educated lawyer and teacher — and a member of the lowly Sudra caste. Ramabai had irrevocably ‘polluted’ herself by marrying someone who was not only not a Chitpavan Brahman, but was also decidedly far beneath her in caste ranking. Consequently, they were married in a civil ceremony rather than a religious one, but at this point, Ramabai was content to avoid Hindu religious forms. The wretched demise of her family in spite of their religiousness and the utter lack of hope in Hindu religious texts for women and the lower castes had turned her away.

Ramabai and Bepin lived in Silchar in the state of Assam. There, Ramabai came across the Gospel of Luke in Bengali and explored it with the help of Baptist missionary Isaac Allen, with this result: “Having lost all faith in my former religion, and with my heart hungering after something better, I eagerly learnt everything I could about the Christian religion, and declared my intention to become a Christian.” [7] However, Bepin disallowed her baptism, for it would mean becoming a member of “the despised Christian community” [8]. That was the price of public conversion to a non-Hindu religion — exodus from the caste system and descent into the shame of being without caste.

In April 1881, a baby girl, Manorama (“Heart’s Joy”), was born to the couple. Then Bepin too died from cholera in February 4, 1882, after less than two years of marriage. Ramabai became that most despised of women in Hindu society — the widow — and she had a ten-month old infant to feed. Undaunted, she returned to her father’s hometown of Pune that same year and became a reformist for female emancipation, specifically in the areas of “oppressive customs, child marriage, denial of basic literacy, and, especially, oppression of high-caste child widows” [9], declaring to the English Education Commission led by Dr. W. W. Hunter in September 1882,

I am the child of a man who had to suffer a great deal on account of advocating female education, and who was compelled to discuss the subject as well as to carry out his own views, amidst great opposition. I consider it my duty, to the very end of my life, to maintain this cause and to advocate the proper position of women in this land. [10]

While at Pune, Ramabai founded the Arya Mahila Samaj (“Aryan Women Society”) and made her debut as a writer with Stree Dharma-Neeti (“Morals for Women”). She also met the Reverend Father Nehemiah Goreh, who was also a Chitpavan Brahman and helped address her queries about the tension between their Hindu background and the Christian faith.

Travels Abroad

After Pune was England on May 17, 1883 — Ramabai had accepted an invitation to the Community of St. Mary the Virgin at Wantage, Oxfordshire. Coming across a home for the destitute in Fulham, she witnessed how “something could be done to reclaim the so-called fallen and that Christians, whom Hindus considered outcastes and cruel, were kind to these unfortunate women … I had never heard or seen anything of the kind done for this class of women by the Hindus of my own country.” [11] Moreover, the unavoidable parallel with the story of Jesus and the woman of Samaria in John 4 convinced Ramabai that “Christ was truly the Divine Saviour He claimed to be, and no one but He could transform and uplift the downtrodden women of India … Thus my heart was drawn to the religion of Christ.” [12] She was baptised on September 29, 1883.

Ramabai’s time in England had a negative pall, however. Anandibai Bhagat, her travelling companion, was driven by an extreme fear of forced conversion and tried to guard Ramabai from this supposed evil by attempting to strangle her, eventually committing suicide with a slow-acting poison. Ramabai’s hopes to study medicine were dashed when a hearing problem was identified. Sister Geraldine, the spiritual mentor assigned to Ramabai upon her baptism, proved adversarial to her charge’s propensity to challenge established teachings, whether it was “the authority of the church, the nature of the universal church, whether Ramabai would be allowed to teach Sanskrit to boys … [or] how Mano would be taught to pray” [13]. Thankfully, Dorothea Beale, the principal of Cheltenham Ladies’ College and a reformist herself, backed Ramabai’s steadfast stance that “I shall not bind myself to believe in and accept everything that is taught by the church; before I accept it I must be convinced that it is according to Christ’s teaching.” [14] When the opportunity came in 1886 to visit the United States for her cousin Anandibai Joshi’s graduation from medical school (Anandibai Joshi was the first Indian woman to earn a Doctor of Medicine degree from the United States. She died from tuberculosis in 1887, only a short while after returning to serve Indian women, who could not or would not be served by male doctors.), Ramabai was happy to take it.

In the United States, Ramabai launched herself into a lecture tour lasting two years, comprising hundreds of well-received meetings and resulting in funds raised for her intended aim to ease the lot of Indian women, in particular the high-caste child widow. The American Ramabai Association was set up to support her work and she absorbed the early childhood education methods of Friedrich Froebel, translating his “teaching materials and compatible curriculum into the Marathi language and provided her own explanations for adapting these methods to Hindu culture” [15]. Ramabai’s lectures were adapted for her second book, The High-Caste Hindu Woman, which detailed such atrocities as the killing of female babies using opium or “a skillful pressure upon the neck, which is known as the ‘putting nail to the throat’” [16], the duty of a widow to “emaciate her body by living on pure flowers, roots and fruit” [17], and how a widow without a child (quite likely a child widow) is cursed as “the greatest criminal upon whom Heaven’s judgement has been pronounced” [18]. It was little wonder that Ramabai found many supporters among American women for her cause.

Works Accomplished

In February 1889, Ramabai returned to India for good, except for one more visit to the United States in 1898. Her first attempt at opening a home to shelter and school high-caste child widows was in March 1889 with Sharada Sadan (“Home of Learning”) in Bombay. In December 1890, she moved the school to Pune. All this while, Ramabai was experiencing a spiritual awakening which led her to decide that although Sharada Sadan was meant to be a non-sectarian institution, she could not refrain from praying to God and reading aloud the Bible every day, or answering queries about “the true religion” [19]. This naturally led to conversions among the girls under her charge, and constant, heated attacks by her Chitpavan Brahman enemies and Hindu nationalists ensued. In August 1893, the board of the school withdrew their support and the girls were removed by their parents and guardians. “Never again did Ramabai enjoy support from the Hindu public at large. The event marked the end of Ramabai’s career upon the all-India stage.” [20] Be that as it may, this failure freed her to plunge into the darker depths of Hindu society and set free the captives there.

In October 1894, Ramabai disguised herself as a mendicant and became a religious pilgrim once again. The depravations she witnessed at religious sites by so-called religious men horrified her. Young widows who had been abandoned by their families were being forced into sexual slavery and prostitution, then tossed out like used rags to die as beggars. Returning to Pune in January 1897, she brought back sixty girls of various castes who would otherwise have been sold for a pittance in the midst of a famine. In May 1897, she embarked on a fresh journey to rescue “small destitute girls hiding in jungles where beasts prowled” [21]. By September 1898, at Kedgoan near Pune, Ramabai had established an unabashedly Christian centre of sheltering and schooling with the Mukti (this word can be translated “freedom”, “liberty”, “liberation”, “release” or “salvation”, according to Robert Eric Frykenberg [22]) Mission. On the same grounds, which were serviced by wells and farms, there were also well-run homes for prostitutes, for elderly women, for boys, and even for the blind, offering them all a hope and a future.

In 1905, “a Pentecostal-type revival swept through Mukti Mission with accompanying fervent prayer, healings, glossolalia and the exorcising of demons” [23]. This occurred six months after Ramabai had felt led to begin praying with about seventy others for “the true conversion of all Indian Christians, including ourselves, and for a special outpouring of the Holy Spirit on all Christians in every land” [24]. She looked upon the events with equanimity, not being swept along by emotions and extremes — she was pleased as long as it was clear that the Holy Spirit was at work in lives that bore fruit.

It was in her last two decades that Ramabai finally found in Christ and Scripture the personal mukti that eluded her in Hindu scriptures. This freedom that she experienced was carried over in her translation of the Bible into Marathi. Convinced that the Bible should be easily understood, she picked up Koine Greek and Biblical Hebrew in order to translate Scripture more fully into the vernacular, deeming the Marathi version at the time overly Sanskritised. To this end, Rajkumar Boaz Johnson claims that she “used terms which came from the pre-Aryan period, which found their way into the vernacular languages” [25] and “sought scrupulously to avoid terms with Hindu presuppositions attached to them” [26]. Her daughter turned out to be immensely talented as well, helping to run the Mukti Mission and assisting in the translation. Tragically, on July 24, 1921, Manorama died suddenly. Ramabai completed the translation on her own and died in her sleep on April 5, 1922, the night she completed proofreading the finished work, entitled Wonderful Testimonies.

In Ramabai, we find a high-caste, high-status Indian widow celebrated for her learning and opposed for her Christian faith, even as she prized independence of thought, wrestled with the implications of Scripture versus her native culture, opened her heart to Christ, and worked tirelessly to meet the needs she saw among the weak and poor in her nation. Her own story is no less than “a continuation of the wonderful testimonies, the salvation testimonials of the biblical texts” [27].

NADAR CHRISTIAN WOMEN

The South Indian Nadar caste, previously known as the Shanar, are traditionally under the Sudra caste grouping but describe themselves as Kshatriya. There are two key events in their history that this paper will consider for the insight they offer on the Hindu Christian woman of the late nineteenth century — the breast cloth controversy, which was officially resolved with a proclamation by the Maharaja of Travancore in 1859, and the removal of jewellery led by the Nadar Christian widow Ponnammal in 1909, as recounted in her 1917 biography by the missionary Amy Carmichael.

Being low caste, Nadar women before the resolution of the breast cloth controversy were expected to wear nothing above their waist. With mass conversions happening along kinship lines in the nineteenth century, missionaries renewed their efforts to urge Nadar women to cover themselves for modesty’s sake — that is, what would be considered ‘proper’ behaviour in the western church. After years of persuasion, around 1856, Nadar women began to risk the displeasure of their higher-caste overlords and wear the upper cloth and jacket prepared by the missionaries. Harsh conflict ensued between the higher castes and the Nadars and in 1858 and 1859, things came to a boil. Nadar Christian women were stripped of the upper cloth in public and had to endure physical abuse and humiliation at the hands of the higher castes. While the Nadars as a community probably saw in the issue an opportunity to remove a key symbol of their low caste, the role of the Nadar Christian women cannot be downplayed. After all, they had to be willing sacrifices to establish a distinctively Indian Christian identity — one that made the visual statement through the covering of the upper cloth that “We are modest women; we have sexual honour worth protecting.” [28]

The second event, which involves Ponnammal, must be seen in the context of how important jewellery was in south Indian culture — “From a specifically Hindu point of view, a heavily jewelled woman was well protected and cared for. … Three kinds of women generally did not wear gold or other valuable jewellery: widows, women from very low-caste communities, and women from extremely poor families.”   [29] Even among Christian families, this signifying of status would have been important. Removing the jewellery would be a dishonouring act, especially in a community that prized the status that material wealth brought, as appeared to be the case with the socially aspirational Nadars. Why, then, did Ponnammal and the Nadar Christian women who followed her lead decide to remove their adornments? It was an honest act of worship, done “to signify an inner change: the yielding of their mind, heart, and conscience to Christian ideals of modesty and humility” [30]. Opposition from their families then arose because of “the coexistence of Hindu meanings attached to these same gestures” [31] of faith.

These are two instances of intentional ‘dishonouring’ of Nadar Christian women in Hindu eyes in order to honour Christ. Whether it was a communal act of sacrifice or an individual call to deeper servanthood, there was evident tension between the Hindu and the Christian elements amongst the Nadars during the British Raj. At a certain point, one identity would have had to take precedence over the other.

BIBLE WOMEN OF THE LATE NINETEENTH CENTURY

Bible women were local Indian women who helped western female missionaries in zenana (“Zenana” refers to the part of a high-caste house where women were secluded; hence, “zenana mission” targets these women.) missions. They had to be reasonably literate and their conversion to Christianity had to be “as thorough and orthodox as possible” [32]. As indigenous Christians, they were expected to not only be better agents of the Gospel than the foreign missionaries they assisted, but also good ambassadors for Christ, “demonstrating in their person the transformative capacity of the Christian faith” [33]. Between 1890 and 1940, schools to train Bible women were opened by missionaries like the American Eva Swift to equip “Indian Christian women with rudimentary or no formal education” [34] with “sufficient knowledge of the Bible and techniques of evangelisation to find employment in the missions” [35].

A report from 1893 by a Bible woman, Y. Jesuvadiyal, who worked for the American Madura Mission reveals the creativity, flexibility, passion and skill of which the Bible women were capable. In it, Jesuvadiyal describes how while she was teaching in a house, a girl brought water and holy ash to the women, who proceeded to drink the water and put the ash on themselves. When she discovered the water and ash were from Ramesvaram, a Tamil pilgrimage site, and that the women believed they could increase their religious merit with the materials because a holy man had given them, she replied,

When I am sick, if you eat medicine, will I become healthy? If she goes to Ramesvaram, how can you obtain merit? Is it possible that water can cleanse our sins? Our sins will not be absolved by the merit performed by an even bigger sinner than ourselves … For the cleansing of sins, this water, these ashes, and pilgrimages will not help. If we believe in the one who came to cleanse our sins and save us, if we confess our sins, and accept forgiveness from him, our sins will be cleansed by the blood that he spilled on the cross. [36]

Hailing from a variety of backgrounds, many of the Bible women had been “widows and abandoned wives … vulnerable to sexual and economic exploitation” [37]. They found their calling and ways to move beyond the restrictions on women from ‘respectable’ castes, who if travelling alone would either be mistaken as “working women from lower castes who were engaged in trade” [38] or “wandering religious women who were often associated with prostitution” [39]. By dressing themselves in the white, coarse cotton saris meant for widows, wearing no jewellery and carting around “enormous cloth-covered Bibles as a visible sign of their vocation as religious women” [40], they snuffed out any signal that they might be sexually available.

In the case of the Bible women, Hindu conventions were employed to perform Christian outreach effectively. The Bible women managed to create their own social identity and definition of respectability, which at the time usually meant for women “restricted mobility” [41]. Their encounter with Christ thus gave them a fresh start and a future with hope, and this was the testimony they could share in their mission work.

CONCLUSION

Throughout the paper, echoes of the encounter between Jesus and the woman of Samaria in John 4:1–42 resound. Jesus’ intentional crossing of perceived lines of purity by asking for water from a Samaritan, his countercultural engagement of the “weaker sex” by discussing theology with the woman of Samaria, his Messianic answer to the thirst for truth and life, and the Samaritan woman’s effusive sharing of her testimony about Him are all reflected in the accounts given of Pandita Ramabai, the Nadar Christian women, and the Bible women of the late nineteenth century.

Christ truly spoke to the Hindu woman under the British Raj and she responded in spirit and in truth. As Christians today, whether male or female, and whatever our ethnicity, we would do well to follow the same pattern of refusing prejudice, respecting difference and reaching out across social strata with the good news of salvation in word and in deed — this then would be a true pouring out of our lives in worship.

ENDNOTES

[1] As understood from Robert Eric Frykenberg’s chapter on “Contextualising Complexity, I: India’s Lands, Peoples, and Social Structures” in Christianity in India: From Beginnings to the Present, Oxford History of the Christian Church, ed. Henry and Owen Chadwick (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), 21–56.

[2] Ibid., 41.

[3] Rowena Robinson, Christianity in India (New Delhi: Sage Publications, 2003), 12.

[4] Mark A. Noll and Carolyn Nystrom, Clouds of Witnesses: Christian Voices from Africa and Asia (Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 2011), 129.

[5] Ibid., 129.

[6] Ramabai Dongre Medhavi, A Testimony of Our Inexhaustible Treasure (1917; repr., Kedagon/Pune: Mukti Mission, 1992), 16. Quoted in Robert Eric Frkyenberg, Christianity in India: From Beginnings to the Present, Oxford History of the Christian Church, ed. Henry and Owen Chadwick (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), 384.

[7] Ibid., 23. Quoted in Frykenberg, Christianity in India, 386.

[8] Ibid.

[9] Frykenberg, Christianity in India, 386.

[10] Ramabai Dongre Medhavi, The High-Caste Hindu Woman (Philadelphia: The Jas. B. Rodgers Printing Co., 1888), xvi–xvii, Archive.org e-book.

[11] Ramabai, Testimony, 25–6. Quoted in Frykenberg, Christianity in India, 388.

[12] Ibid.

[13] Noll and Nystrom, Clouds of Witnesses, 133.

[14] Ramabai to Canon Butler (Cheltenham, 2, 3 July 1885), The Letters and Correspondence of Pandita Ramabai, ed. A. B. Shah. (Bombay: Maharashtra State Board for Literature, 1977), 72–80. Quoted in Robert Eric Frkyenberg, Christianity in India: From Beginnings to the Present, Oxford History of the Christian Church, ed. Henry and Owen Chadwick (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), 391.

[15] Noll and Nystrom, Clouds of Witnesses, 134.

[16] Ibid.

[17] Ibid., 72.

[18] Ibid., 70.

[19] Ramabai, Testimony, 40–41. Quoted in Frykenberg, Christianity in India, 396.

[20] Frykenberg, Christianity in India, 398.

[21] Ibid, 401.

[22] Robert Eric Frykenberg, “The Social Context: Caste and ‘Colour’,” ChristianHistory.net, July 31, 2006, http://www.christianitytoday.com/ch/2005/issue87/10.28.html (accessed April 23, 2012).

[23] Noll and Nystrom, Clouds of Witnesses, 138.

[24] Ramabai, Testimony, 42. Quoted in Frykenberg, Christianity in India, 408.

[25] Rajkumar Boaz Johnson, “The Biblical Theological Contribution of Pandita Ramabai: A Neglected Pioneer Indian Christian Feminist Theologian,” Ex Auditu 23 (January 1, 2007), 128, ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials, EBSCOhost (accessed April 23, 2012).

[26] Ibid., 129.

[27] Ibid., 125.

[28] Eliza F. Kent, Converting Women: Gender and Protestant Christianity in Colonial South India (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004), 217.

[29] Ibid., 224.

[30] Ibid., 226.

[31] Ibid.

[32] Kent, Converting Women, 151.

[33] Ibid.

[34] Ibid., 157.

[35] Ibid.

[36] Handwritten report by Y. Jesuvadiyal, UTC/AMM 26, trans. Kent, Converting Women, 159.

[37] Kent, Converting Women, 153.

[38] Ibid., 154.

[39] Ibid.

[40] Ibid., 155.

[41] Ibid.

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