Download Implicate and Transgress: Marcella Althaus-Reid, Writing, and a Transformation of Theological ... PDF

TitleImplicate and Transgress: Marcella Althaus-Reid, Writing, and a Transformation of Theological ...
LanguageEnglish
File Size1.4 MB
Total Pages267
Document Text Contents
Page 1

Implicate and Transgress: Marcella
Althaus-Reid, Writing, and a

Transformation of Theological Knowledge
The Harvard community has made this

article openly available. Please share how
this access benefits you. Your story matters

Citation Hofheinz, Hannah L. 2015. Implicate and Transgress: Marcella
Althaus-Reid, Writing, and a Transformation of Theological
Knowledge. Doctoral dissertation, Harvard Divinity School.

Citable link http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:15821954

Terms of Use This article was downloaded from Harvard University’s DASH
repository, and is made available under the terms and conditions
applicable to Other Posted Material, as set forth at http://
nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:dash.current.terms-of-
use#LAA

Page 2

! !


 

 
 


 

 

 

 

Implicate
 and
 Transgress:
 
 

 

Marcella
 Althaus-­Reid,
 Writing,
 and
 a
 Transformation
 of
 Theological
 Knowledge
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A
 dissertation
 presented
 
By
 

 

Hannah
 L.
 Hofheinz
 

 
To
 

 

The
 Faculty
 of
 Harvard
 Divinity
 School
 

 

in
 partial
 fulfillment
 of
 the
 requirements
 

 

for
 the
 degree
 of
 

 

Doctor
 of
 Theology
 

 

In
 the
 Subject
 of
 

 

Theology
 

 

Harvard
 University
 

 

Cambridge,
 Massachusetts
 

 

April
 2015

Page 133

!

! !123
 

detailed.
 Moreover,
 the
 memories
 of
 tradition
 veil
 his
 flesh
 with
 constructions
 of
 his
 

masculinity
 so
 that
 even
 when
 a
 penis
 appears
 it
 functions
 as
 a
 phallus.
 As
 she
 points
 out:
 

“we
 know
 more
 about
 the
 gender
 making
 of
 the
 man
 Jesus
 than
 of
 his
 biological
 status,
 or,
 

what
 is
 more
 important,
 his
 sexuality.”53
 What
 would
 happen
 if
 we
 confronted
 the
 obscenity
 

of
 his
 fleshy
 facticity?
 What
 would
 happen
 if
 we
 confronted
 the
 hanging
 body
 of
 Jesus
 with
 

(or
 without,
 as
 the
 case
 may
 be)
 a
 penis?
 What
 if
 rather
 than
 a
 graceful
 image
 of
 Jesus
 

crucified,
 veiled
 to
 suit
 heteronormative,
 patriarchal
 […]
 desires
 for
 God,
 we
 witnessed
 the
 

obscenity
 of
 his
 inert
 flesh
 as
 it
 was
 given
 that
 painful
 day
 (or
 other
 more
 pleasant
 ones)?
 

Perhaps
 we
 would
 encounter
 God?54
 The
 second
 motion
 of
 Althaus-­‐Reid’s
 use
 of
 Sartre’s
 

concept
 of
 obscenity,
 the
 motion
 in
 reverse,
 begins
 with
 wordplay.
 “Obscenity
 appears
 now
 

to
 us
 as
 the
 dis-­‐covering
 of
 grace,
 and
 the
 way
 to
 transcendence,”
 she
 writes.55
 By
 removing
 

(uncovering,
 dis-­‐covering)
 the
 veils
 of
 illusion,
 obscenity
 exposes
 (sees,
 discovers)
 grace.
 

Transcendence
 connotes
 the
 symbolic
 excess
 to
 which
 the
 reversal
 of
 obscenity
 gestures.
 
 

Baudrillard
 and
 Sartre
 conceptualize
 obscenity
 in
 distinctly
 different
 registers.
 Yet
 

for
 both
 men,
 the
 central
 offense
 of
 the
 obscene
 is
 its
 disillusion/dissolution
 of
 that
 which
 

they
 claim
 to
 be
 helpful
 shrouds
 of
 the
 real.
 We
 need
 to
 be
 able
 to
 transcend
 a
 given
 

situation,
 they
 teach;
 we
 need
 to
 be
 able
 to
 transcend
 materiality.
 As
 such,
 obscenity
 

appears
 unredeemable.
 For
 Sartre,
 obscenity
 destroys
 the
 dancer’s
 garment
 of
 grace
 and
 

leaves
 her
 flesh
 exposed;
 for
 Baudrillard,
 obscenity
 destroys
 the
 rituals
 and
 rules
 that
 set
 

the
 stage
 of
 an
 imagined
 scene.
 Herein
 occurs
 the
 second
 aspect
 of
 Althaus-­‐Reid’s
 reversal
 

of
 obscenity.
 She
 folds
 an
 insistence
 on
 the
 productive
 possibilities
 of
 material
 exposure
 up
 

!
53
 Ibid.
 

54
 C.f.
 “Obscenity
 no.
 1:
 Bi/Christ”
 in
 Althaus-­‐Reid,
 Indecent
 Theology,
 112-­‐120.
 
 

55
 Ibid.,
 111.

Page 134

!

! !124
 

against
 the
 philosophers’
 negativity.
 Althaus-­‐Reid
 reverses
 the
 valuation
 of
 obscenity.
 

Obscenity
 ruptures
 ideological
 illusions
 in
 order
 to
 expose
 material
 realities
 that
 these
 

illusions
 hide,
 but
 the
 formulation
 of
 obscenity
 also
 leaves
 the
 body
 immediately
 available
 

for
 persisting
 and
 for
 other
 citations.56
 
 

Like
 the
 sadist’s
 efforts
 to
 ensnare
 the
 freedom
 of
 his
 object,
 the
 apophasis
 of
 

writing
 with
 ‘obscenity,
 in
 reverse’
 only
 succeeds
 within
 fleeting
 moments.
 When
 the
 shake
 

of
 a
 muscle,
 the
 bounce
 of
 a
 breast,
 or
 the
 drop
 of
 sweat
 interrupt
 and
 claim
 our
 attention
 

with
 the
 exposure
 of
 materiality
 but
 do
 not
 yet
 make
 sense,
 we
 can
 gesture
 obliquely
 beyond
 

the
 signifiable.
 Once
 they
 start
 to
 make
 sense,
 however,
 the
 signifying
 webs
 of
 language
 and
 

the
 illusions
 of
 simulations
 again
 veil
 the
 flesh.
 Althaus-­‐Reid
 experiments
 with
 letting
 

‘obscenity,
 in
 reverse’
 serve
 as
 a
 technique
 to
 foster
 encounters
 with
 the
 materiality
 of
 lives
 

lived.
 The
 apophatic
 technique
 utters
 that
 which
 cannot
 be
 written:
 obscenity
 allows
 texts
 

to
 expose
 bodies
 and
 their
 disruptions.
 
 

I
 add
 that
 the
 writing
 of
 obscenities
 finds
 these
 fleeting
 appearances
 of
 fleshy
 

facticity
 in
 surprising
 textual
 spaces.
 We
 can
 write
 apophatically
 with
 a
 sensibility
 for
 

establishing
 other
 textual
 spaces
 in
 which
 language,
 knowledge,
 and
 power
 function
 

differently.
 “The
 road
 is
 broad
 and
 needs
 to
 be
 per/verted
 (given
 another
 interpretation),
 

twisted
 in
 a
 forbidden
 direction,”57
 Althaus-­‐Reid
 writes.
 The
 per/versions
 of
 theology
 

arising
 out
 of
 diverse
 experiences
 of
 exclusion
 and
 suffering
 expose
 processes
 of
 disorder
 

that
 unravel
 the
 logic
 of
 theological
 simulacra.
 Constantly
 multiplying
 per/versions
 helps
 to
 

ensure
 that
 we
 do
 not
 confuse
 new
 veils
 with
 the
 flesh
 below.
 
 

!
56
 Judith
 Butler,
 see
 discussion
 p.
 128-­‐130
 below.
 

57
 Althaus-­‐Reid,
 Indecent
 Theology,
 121.

Page 266

!

! !256
 

———.
 “Mark.”
 In
 Queer
 Bible
 Commentary,
 517-­‐525.
 London:
 SCM
 Press,
 2006.
 

———.
 “Who
 framed
 Clodovis
 Boff?:
 Revisiting
 the
 controversy
 of
 ‘theologies
 of
 the
 
genitive’
 in
 the
 twenty-­‐first
 century.”
 In
 Theology
 in
 a
 World
 of
 Specialization,
 edited
 
by
 Erik
 Borgman
 and
 Felix
 Wilfred.
 London:
 SCM,
 2006.
 

———.
 “Searching
 for
 a
 queer
 Sophia-­‐Wisdom:
 the
 post-­‐colonial
 Rahab.”
 In
 Patriarchs,
 
prophets
 and
 other
 villains,
 128-­‐140.
 Oakville,
 Conn:
 Equinox,
 2007.
 

———.
 “Class,
 sex
 and
 the
 theologian:
 reflections
 on
 the
 liberationist
 movement
 in
 Latin
 
America.”
 In
 Another
 possible
 world,
 23-­‐38.
 London:
 SCM,
 2007.
 

———.
 “Queering
 the
 cross:
 the
 politics
 of
 redemption
 and
 the
 external
 debt.”
 Feminist
 
Theology
 15,
 no.
 3
 (May,
 2007):
 289-­‐301.
 

———.
 “The
 bi/girl
 writings:
 from
 feminist
 theology
 to
 queer
 theologies.”
 In
 Post-­Christian
 
feminisms,
 105-­‐116.
 Burlington,
 VT:
 Ashgate,
 2008.
 

———.
 “On
 queer
 theory
 and
 liberation
 theology:
 the
 irruption
 of
 the
 sexual
 subject
 in
 
theology.”
 In
 Homosexualities,
 83-­‐96.
 London:
 SCM
 Press,
 2008.
 

Althaus-­‐Reid,
 Marcella,
 and
 Lisa
 Isherwood.
 “Thinking
 theology
 and
 queer
 theory.”
 Feminist
 
Theology
 15,
 no.
 3
 (May,
 2007):
 302-­‐314.
 

Althaus-­‐Reid,
 Marcella,
 and
 T
 Jack
 Thompson.
 “Postcolonialism
 and
 Religion.”
 Studies
 in
 
World
 Christianity
 5,
 no.
 2
 (January,
 1999):
 129-­‐240.
 


 
Reviews
 

 
Althaus-­‐Reid,
 Marcella.
 “A
 Theology
 of
 Liberation
 and
 the
 Conflict
 of
 Criticism.”
 

International
 Review
 of
 Mission
 80,
 no.
 319-­‐320
 (1991):
 439-­‐442.
 

———.
 “Puerto
 Rican
 and
 Cuban
 Catholics
 in
 the
 US,
 1900-­‐1965.”
 Studies
 in
 World
 
Christianity
 3,
 no.
 2
 (January,
 1997):
 253.
 

———.
 “Mestizo
 Christianity:
 theology
 from
 the
 Latino
 perspective.”
 Studies
 in
 World
 
Christianity
 3,
 no.
 1
 (January,
 1997):
 106-­‐107.
 

———.
 “Caminemos
 con
 Jesús:
 toward
 a
 Hispanic/Latino
 theology
 of
 accompaniment.”
 
Studies
 in
 World
 Christianity
 3,
 no.
 1
 (January,
 1997):
 107-­‐108.
 

———.
 “Mexico
 at
 the
 crossroads:
 politics,
 the
 church
 and
 the
 poor.”
 Studies
 in
 World
 
Christianity
 3,
 no.
 1
 (January,
 1997):
 108-­‐109.
 

———.
 “Mexican
 Americans
 and
 the
 Catholic
 Church,
 1900-­‐1965.”
 Studies
 in
 World
 
Christianity
 3,
 no.
 1
 (January,
 1997):
 109-­‐110.
 

———.
 “Liberating
 Eschatology:
 essays
 in
 honor
 of
 Letty
 M.
 Russell.”
 Theology
 103,
 no.
 815
 
(S-­‐O
 2000):
 378.

Page 267

!

! !257
 

———.
 “Porcile
 Santiso,
 María
 Teresa,
 1943-­‐2001.”
 Studies
 in
 World
 Christianity
 7,
 no.
 2
 
(January,
 2001):
 241-­‐243.
 

———.
 “French
 feminists
 on
 religion:
 a
 reader.”
 Studies
 in
 World
 Christianity
 8,
 no.
 1
 
(January,
 2002):
 165-­‐167.
 

———.
 “Eve’s
 glue:
 the
 role
 women
 play
 in
 holding
 the
 church
 together.”
 Expository
 Times
 
114,
 no.
 3
 (December,
 2002):
 102-­‐103.
 

———.
 “Feminist
 philosophy
 of
 religion:
 critical
 readings.”
 Journal
 of
 Contemporary
 Religion
 
19,
 no.
 3
 (October,
 2004):
 389-­‐391.
 

———.
 “Queering
 creole
 spiritual
 traditions:
 lesbian,
 gay,
 bisexual,
 and
 transgender
 
participation
 in
 African-­‐inspired
 traditions
 in
 the
 Americas.”
 Theology
 &
 Sexuality
 
11,
 no.
 3
 (May,
 2005):
 89-­‐91.
 

———.
 “Colonialism
 and
 homosexuality.”
 Theology
 &
 Sexuality
 11,
 no.
 3
 (May,
 2005):
 94-­‐95.
 

———.
 “Doing
 Christian
 ethics
 from
 the
 margins.”
 Expository
 Times
 117,
 no.
 4
 (January,
 
2006):
 170-­‐171.
 

———.
 “Celibate
 challenges
 to
 Christianity.”
 Expository
 Times
 118,
 no.
 4
 (January,
 2007):
 
182-­‐183.
 

———.
 “Levinas
 and
 theology.”
 Expository
 Times
 118,
 no.
 5
 (February,
 2007):
 256-­‐257.
 

———.
 “Gender,
 religion
 and
 diversity:
 cross-­‐cultural
 perspectives.”
 Expository
 Times
 118,
 
no.
 7
 (April,
 2007):
 359-­‐360.
 

———.
 “Bodily
 citations:
 religion
 and
 Judith
 Butler.”
 Journal
 of
 Contemporary
 Religion
 22,
 
no.
 3
 (October,
 2007).
 

———.
 “Wounds
 that
 heal:
 theology,
 imagination
 and
 health.”
 Feminist
 Theology
 16,
 no.
 2
 
(January,
 2008):
 279-­‐280.

Similer Documents