Feminist Hermeneutics and the Official Roman Catholic Understanding of Marriage: A Dialectical Impasse or Imaginative Reshaping?

Lawrence Faulkenberry, Fordham University

Abstract

This study objectively examines the contemporary Roman Catholic understanding of marriage and certain feminist theologies for compatibilities. It then places both in dialogical positions. From these new positions the study explores the possibility that some forms of feminism and feminist theologies can unlock a richer and fuller understanding of marriage, while, remaining harmonious with Roman Catholic doctrine. The study accomplishes this by deconstructing stereotypical gendered marital roles and introducing ambiguity/mystery and a plurality of forms. The study also recovers and relocates marriage in its proper vocational setting, thereby exposing communal responsibilities and obligations for society and the common good that are inherent in the union. This richer understanding requires a model of religious education that goes beyond the present focus on the interiority of the union that educates for isolation. ^ In light of this, the study analyzes the church’s present forms and processes of educating and preparing couples for marriage and notes its benefits and shortcomings. Using Jack Mezirow’s transformative learning theory informed by a poststructuralist feminist theology the study presents a lifelong and life-wide model to prepare and educate for marriage in its new contexts and shatters the walls of isolation that alienate couples and families in solitude.^

Subject Area

Religion|Theology|Sociology

Recommended Citation

Faulkenberry, Lawrence, "Feminist Hermeneutics and the Official Roman Catholic Understanding of Marriage: A Dialectical Impasse or Imaginative Reshaping?" (2018). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI10831391.
https://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI10831391

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