Saturday, April 14, 2007

the promise

And now she turns her face brightly on the new morning in the new classroom
new in her beauty her skin her lashes her lively body:
Race, class...all that...but isn't that all just history?
Aren't people bored with all that?

She could be
myself at nineteen but free of reverence for past ideas
ignorant of hopes piled on her

Adrienne Rich, from "Inscriptions", Dark Fields of the Republic (1994)

Ambrogio Lorenzetti, "Suckling Madonna" (1330)

the question asked here is whether or not christianity will live up to its promise? one of the most significant groups contributing to the spread and success of christianity in late antiquity were women. they embraced the message of christianity that they need not be owned by a man, and that christianity would mean freedom for them. and so the question remains now: are women fully human, and does the reconciliation promised by christianity apply to them in full, or must women, and consequently all of humanity, turn elsewhere because the promise that in christ there is neither male nor female has been broken?

had the child of mary been a girl, would she have been any less the voice of Reconciliation? but would the world have heard her voice? do we hear her now? the promise must be fulfilled.


Marjorie Kramer, "Self-Portrait Breastfeeding Raloon, After Ambrogio Lorenzetti" (1976)

Western women are not able to discard completely and forget our personal, cultural or religious Christian history. We will either transform it into a new liberating future or continue to be subject to its tyranny whether we recognize its power or not. Feminists cannot afford such an ahistorical or antihistorical stance because it is precisely the power of oppression that deprives people of their history.

Elizabeth Schüssler-Fiorenza, In Memory of Her (1983)

No comments: