April 10, 2014

NEW ARTICLE: Traces of Transgressive Traditions: Shifting Liberation Theologies through Jotería Studies

In this recent number of Aztlán: Journal of Chicano Studies there is a special dossier section on jotería studies with essays from a variety of scholars and artists engaged in this bourgeoning field. Included in those essays is my take on a genealogy for a jotería theology in which I turn to liberation theology and mujerista thought as predecessors that have opened up theological spaces and temporalities to talk about the body and race in theological terms.

Read the full article here.

Excerpt from article...

Conceptualizing the field of jotería studies within the queer Chicana/o imagination is a sacred act that not only liberates our jotería as a people and an identity but also gestures toward the theological development of sexual minorities within Chicana/o and Mexican contexts. As a queer Chicano activist-theologian, I find myself dissatisfied with current progressive theologies that do not speak to the experiences and embodiment of a jotería identity. My own experiences have left me frustrated by the ways in which conversations within current queer theological thought continue to be filtered through a white masculinist lens, loaded with privilege and levels of access, that does not lend itself to other global or cultural contexts. Likewise, while Latin American liberation theologies have foregrounded issues of race and class difference, these discourses have downplayed, or neglected altogether, the experiences of marginalization and oppression of queer persons, both in their own right and in relation to race and class. I believe, however, that the emergence of jotería studies enables a rethinking of the body and sex in light of Chicana/o experiences that informs and extends my own theological frameworks. I argue that current progressive theologies neglect to develop and imagine understandings of marginalized bodies by considering race, class, and sexuality as categories that shape one another. In effect, queer Chicana/os are left behind and out of the picture when queer embodied and collective experiences are discussed and interpreted.

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