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Anne Hutchinson

            Dissent always emerges among orthodox populations. However, when does innocent dissention, a natural phenomenon, become grounds for banishment? Is it just a matter of context and social status, or does gender play a more significant role? Anne Hutchinson was not the first to question Puritan doctrine nor was she the last. Her expulsion from the colony resulted from the intimidation felt by the colonial leaders. Anne Hutchinson posed a threat to the Massachusetts Bay Colony for three reasons: her actions defied the gender roles set for the Puritan women of the day, her religious teachings challenged the Puritan orthodoxy, and the fact that the teachings struck a responsive chord in many listeners threatened to divide the commonwealth into a band of dissenting factions.
             Although men and women spiritually existed on the same level, women were still seen as intellectually and morally inferior. Deep discussions and scrutinizing of religion simply were not "fitting for [the female] sex." Women's role remained domestic and private, to run the household and to be a good Puritan. When she gathered women at her home to encourage them to seek their own relationship with God and to find their own strength. She emerged as a shining example of how strong and wise a woman could be, which inspired the other women. The Puritan system simply could not have that happening in their perfect city. On the other hand, her actions were also seen as proof of the immoral nature of females, stemming from Eve's first taste of the apple. As Eve seduced Adam into biting the apple, the leaders saw Hutchinson "seduce many honest persons" with her meetings and her message. .
             Anne Hutchinson also posed a threat because her teachings often went against the orthodox teachings of the Puritan church in a time when the antinomian movement was causing a lot of friction in the community. The spread of antinomianism kept the clergy and other leaders on their toes.

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