Queer Madonnas, nonviolence, and the macho Christian right: or ‘how to do Mariology without Men’

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Abstract

This article asks whether Adriana Cavarero’s invocation of the Christian Madonna to inspire a pacifist feminist ethics could help counter the ever-strengthening alliance between Conservative Christianity and the radical right which I refer to as “macho Christianity”. Seeking to flesh out Cavarero’s undeveloped invocation of the Madonna’s love as “non-stereotypical” I turn to queer and non-dominant indigenous Mariologies. Their alternative narratives provide a novel perspective on the human relationality at work at the heart of the Christian story, indicating that for too long Man has held Christianity hostage, limiting and contorting its message. They suggest that if we are to counter macho Christianity we need an account of Christian love that recognises the radical absence of normative Man at its root. I use these alternative Mariologies to develop Cavarero’s “non-stereotypical” love into one such account via a novel interpretation of the Christian love of enemies as a nonviolent, yet militant, performative political practice of interruption, from which less dominatory ways of relating to one another may emerge.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPolitical Theology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 1 May 2024

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