Christian scripture, literature, and art abounds with female figures. From the Virgin Mary to female saints, the Christian tradition has memorialized extraordinary women as models for lay women. How did Christianity challenge and preserve norms for female behavior? How did ascetic women and female martyrs transgress gender expectations? This course navigates the pitfalls and opportunities that the study of women offers for understanding the development of Christian belief and institutions. We will trace how gender was theorized and normative behavior prescribed and enforced within the periods of Late Antiquity, the Middle Ages, Reformation and modern day.