In Soulmates: Resurrecting Eve, Juliana Geran Pilon argues for a return to an egalitarian view of men and women, found in the original Genesis narrative, as reflected through Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. In each of these Abrahamic traditions, it was understood that man and woman were created to be soulmates in God’s image—equal despite their different functions within society. Pilon writes that this original message has gradually been distorted, with disastrous effect. Any hope for an ennobling human community begins by resurrecting Eve as an equal partner to Adam.
The work examines the Biblical creation narrative, comparing it to Greek and other ancient mythologies. Pilon explains how the disturbing association of woman with sin and death led to Eve’s demise as Adam’s equal. The final section of the work deals with the Goddess myth, love and marriage in early religious narratives, and modern man’s search for his soul no less than for a soulmate.
The book, at its core, is a meditation on the relationship between men and women but also among human beings. The resurrection of Eve is indispensable to attaining a true appreciation of love and faith. Pilon uses religious texts, expert commentary, and various works of fiction, poetry, and psychology to make her argument come alive. The work is strengthened by the writing style, alternately poetic and humorous, and a clear and illuminating progression of ideas. Its emphasis on reconciliation and understanding, and its post-feminist outlook will find a receptive audience.
"Dr. Juliana Geran Pilon's new book is truly effervescent! It is bound to inspire countless lively and spirited conversations all across America."
—Michael Novak, George Frederick Jewett Chair in religion and public policy at the American Enterprise Institute; author, Belief and Unbelief
"The Abrahamic faiths—Jews, Christians, and Muslims—constitute about half of the world's population and share the belief that we are descended from Adam and Eve. Ironically, relations between the three faiths are marked by violence and misunderstanding. That is why we must celebrate Juliana Pilon's provocative, brilliant, and urgent plea to underline the centrality of love in the story of Adam and Eve."
—Akbar Ahmed, Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies, American University
"Professor Pilon's book revisits the biblical story of human creation, which illustrates the idea that human beings, male and female, were created in the image of God. The message is not only inspiring but timely. Her contribution is testimony to the wealth of her learning, her conscientious humanity, and her luminous openness to the benevolent aspirations of faith and inquiry."
—Joseph Cropsey, Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of Political Science, University of Chicago
“History has long painted women as the submissive, the subservient, and this has often been codified in Eve. Soulmates: Resurrecting Eve delves into the biblical story of man and woman, and their relationship with each other and God, and the painting of womankind in its role as the second class, as Juliana Geran Pilon hopes to reconcile this notion through an analysis of legend, myth, and scripture. Soulmates: Resurrecting Eve is a fascinating and scholarly discussion of woman in love and life in ancient literature, an excellent choice through and through.”
“The uses and abuses of femininity, as well as the evolving roles of women, including sex and gender, can play a significant role in trans-civilizational understanding . . . Soulmates: Resurrecting Eve facilitates cultural diplomacy. This is neither an effort to construct a syncretic confession nor a feminist manifesto. Instead, Professor Pilon tackles cross cultural issues of male and female equality . . . She belives that by introducing the theme of 'Eve,' of the feminine presence in our cultural discourse, we can somehow strengthen pluralism which would help us overcome our differences as humans.”
—Marek Jan Chodakiewicz, The Institute of World Politics
“Pilon's [book] is a masterful reflection on how mythology and narrative help us move deeper into being in the world rather than fleeing from it, into terror, defensiveness and building walls of hatred. She is at her best when she writes with tongue and cheek. Her sense of humor demonstrates the healthiness of her perceptions. This is difficult terrain to transverse yet she takes the reader by the proverbial hand as we become readerly soulmates. . . . This is not just a book about myth and the Biblical Eve, it has serious ramifications for all those who seek to understand what is currently going on in this world, in the West and our relations with Islam as well as in the Arab spring, Iraq, Afghanistan, and even Iran.”
—Dr. Nancy Kobrin, FamilySecurityMatters.org