Christine aka Rising Up recently introduced me to the work Virginia Ramey Mollenkott, a Christian lesbian scholar. After reading the transcript from an address she gave entitled Whore-ishly Implementing the Political Vision of the Christ-Sophia, I feel full as a tick! (an expression not lost on my friends from the American South)
I can easily write five posts about the content Mollenkott covers in her brief talk and her refreshing insights into how Jesus embodied the sort of political activism that not only reaches out to marginalized and oppressed minorities, but also incites liberation. She also talks about how in Jesus’ day, all women not under the direct control of a man (husband, father or brother) were considered whores. So it wasn’t just what you do, but who controls you.
In speaking about activism and our need to join with other oppressed minorities, Mollenkott says,
We lesbians can live in separatist bliss if we want to, but that does nothing for the larger society or the churches to which we belong.
If we want to implement the political vision of the Christ-Sophia, we must learn to strategically affiliate ourselves with other political or religious groups in order to overcome exploitation, marginalization, powerlessness, cultural imperialism and systemic violence, not only against ourselves but against oppressed people everywhere.
As Phelan says, “Our politics must be informed by affinity rather than identity, not simply because we are not all alike, but because we each embody multiple, often conflicting, identities.”…
To say it another way: because society defines us as outsiders, we can gain clout by making alliances with other outsiders in projects where our goals intersect.