Academic Programs 

 Emerging Voices in Theology   TH-535-2 Fall 2002

The work of contemporary feminist, black and two-thirds world theologians is examined in relation to the classical traditions and contemporary liberation theologies. 


Meeting Day, Time and Dates: 
Tuesdays from 4:30 p.m. to 6:50 p.m.
Location: Room  206

Donna Berman
Adjunct Faculty of Theology and Executive Director, Charter Oak Cultural Center, Hartford

Contact Information:
(860) 249-1207 

Course Syllabus
Class web site


In this course we will explore the ways in which women of color in the U.S., Jewish women and women living in the two-thirds world are revolutionizing how theology is done by boldly, uncompromisingly, unabashedly constructing theologies that reflect their real-life experiences of oppression and survival.  In the words of Asian theologians Mary Jane Mananzan and Lee Sun Ai, "The emerging spirituality of women promises to be vibrant, liberating, and colorful.  Its directions and tendencies seem to open up to greater possibilities of life and freedom, and therefore to more and more opportunities to be truly, intensely, and wholly alive!"  The goal is for students and teacher, as a result of immersing themselves in some of the most exciting, too-often overlooked theological texts of our time and engaging together in deep conversation about these texts, to emerge at course's end more wholly and holy alive.  

Required Texts:  (see booklist)   

Week One:  September 10:  

Introductions, overview of class syllabus, discussion on what theology is and the different processes by which it is created

Week Two:  September 17:  

Struggle to be the Sun Again   

Week Three:  September 24:

Daughters of Anowa, pp. 1-108   

Week Four:  October 1: 

Daughters of Anowa, pp. 109-218  

Week Five:  

October 8: Standing Again at Sinai, pp. vii-120

Week Six:  

October 15: Standing Again at Sinai, pp. 121-238 

Thursday, October 17: Required Lecture:  
Judith Plaskow, "Just Sex:  Rethinking Religious Sexual Ethics" 7pm, Charter Oak Cultural Center 21 Charter Oak Avenue, Hartford 860.249.1207 

Week Seven:  October 22:

Mujerista Theology, pp. 1-102   

Week Eight:  October 29:

Mujerista Theology, pp. 105-205  

Sunday, November 3:
Tanat L'Vat Yiftach:  A Ritual Commemorating Jephthah's Daughter, Charter Oak Cultural Center,  3 pm 

 Week Nine:  November 5:

Sisters in the Wilderness, pp. 1-107   

Friday and Saturday, November 8 and 9: 
A Room of One's Own performed by Anne-Lynn Kettles at the Charter Oak Cultural Center, 8 pm   

Week Ten:  November 12: 

Sisters in the Wilderness, pp. 108-239   

Week:  Eleven:  November 19: 

Readings provided by the instructor   

Week:  Twelve:  November 26:  

Readings provided by the instructor   

Week:  Thirteen:  December 3:  

Readings provided by the instructor 

Final Paper Due:  

A five to ten page reflection paper on the semester's work and how your own theology may have been impacted.   

In addition to doing the reading before each class session, each student is required to prepare and hand in a page or two of 3-5 questions or comments about aspects of the reading for that week that she or he feels are important.  Each student is also required to lead one class discussion which should include the following elements:   

1)  A synopsis of the political, cultural and religious context in which the theologian finds herself 
2)  An overview of the material read
3)  Prepared questions for class discussion
4)  Preparation of a one-page bibliography of related works   

As discussion leader you should facilitate the conversation and allow for and encourage full class participation.   The final paper should be viewed as an opportunity to synthesize the semester's material and to reflect, in a personal way, on its impact on your own life and theology.  If there has been no impact, this too is worthy of exploration in this paper.  The synthesis should be concise, critical and rich;  the reflection thoughtful and reflective of a real grappling with the texts.    

Class Participation:  Regular class attendance and participation are essential to the learning process.  Since we are a community of learners, I ask that anyone who must be absent from a class please call me in advance to let me know.  My home and office numbers are on the first page of this syllabus.  You are very important.  Our class will be diminished without you.   

Discussion Leadership  30% 
Final Reflection Paper    25%
Weekly Written Question/Comments   25%
Class Attendance/Participation   20%      



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