Deadly Innocence: Feminist Theology and the Mythology of Sin
Somewhere in the mid-seventies women were declared innocent. All charges against them were to be dropped. Feminist theology took upon itself the task of reversing the verdict of patriarchal religion. Eve was innocent: it was men that were guilty of making God in their own image, and of trying to shift on to women the burden of guilt for human weakness and evil. In this brilliant, highly readable analysis of feminism, Angela West admits a loss of faith with much of the accepted politics of that tradition. While remaining a committed feminist, she now questions whether the radical feminist critiques of the seventies and eighties were really as radical as they claimed. Or did they in fact tend to contain a new version of some of the errors they were keen to expose? West's claim is that the hunger for purity and innocence -interpreted as ideological purity - inevitably results in a less than innocent cycle of projection and scapegoating. By discarding huge areas of Christian theology as male creations, feminists have silenced aspects of the tradition that might actually help us in the quest for innocence; for example, the acknowledgement of our own capacity for sin, and the recognition that women too have had their part in the history of violence.
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