I find that statement really fascinating and I’m also a little perplexed by it’s meaning. Is he trying to illustrate that women are martyred because of weak bodies, being weak of character? Or is it a comment to the way in which they suffer through their torture? Cobb regards the female gender as a lesser version of a man and I can’t help but think that is how women are being address in 1 Clement. It is acknowledged that women suffer for the faith, but they are somehow doing it wrong. It is the men that will carry the full burden of suffering for (and like) Christ.
Additionally, 1 Peter writes about suffering for the glory of God, yet he does not create any gender lines. At least not specifically, he refers to “man” but I think this is more contextual and refers to the human race. Peter says, “Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will do right and entrust their souls to a faithful Creator” (4:19). Peter seems to be making the claim that ALL who suffer in the name of God will have rewards in heaven. To be fair, Clement has one sentence on this as well. But, it is clear that men are favored martyrs.
Which also gives insight to the collective memory of Christianity. I would venture to guess that many more people know about Stephen, Peter and Paul. They are regarding as shepherds of the faith and praised for suffering great ordeals at the hands of heathens. Even in ideology of modern Christianity, women are not on quite the same level as men. Males are often seen as being more prominent, from roles in churches to Christian homes. It’s interesting to be to think of how men are praised as better Christians because they are perceived to be stronger than women, both emotionally and physically. Yet, when reading texts such as 1 Peter, the way in which someone suffers isn’t mentioned, it is to suffer for the name of God in general.