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Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz’s Mujerista Theology

Striving for social justice and equality has been a timely issue for many centuries. Although Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz with her ideas, which were reflected in Mujerista Theology, has never been accepted by Vatican and church, many of her views deserve attention and respect. Those, who suffer from inequality as well as those, who live in a democratic society should take to heart numerous ideas of social ethics offered by Isasi-Diaz, whom the scientists and theologists of the twentieth century recognized as a mother of Mujerista theology. The theories, concepts and themes offered by Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz not only support her feminist ideas, but explore the necessary social changes.

Firstly, it is essential to emphasize the word choice for the title of the theology – “mujerista“, which means “womanist”. It is very helpful by attracting the attention of people and their positive disposition in contrast to the word “feministic”, which usually is negatively perceived by the Hispanics as it is associated with the “Anglo women” (Isasi-Diaz 560). The Mujerista Theology praised the role of Hispanic women, who were close and dear to Ada Maria. The author’s autobiography, which included the struggles for church acceptance and against being neglected, has filled the concepts offered by her with sincerity and liberal spirit. Such insight encourages readers to trust to her words. Isasi-Diaz believed that poor women represent the group of people, who exercise morality more profoundly than any other group or community (Isasi-Diaz 560). Therefore, the small everyday choices were regarded as definitive for the moral power, which the women possess. Since such small things usually are important for creating a background of the greater ones, the Hispanic women should be honored and appreciated,. Isasi-Diaz tended to show that the church cannot ignore just these women’s efforts. In order to gain social equality and justice one should consider the experience, which has been observed in everyday life, not only the one, which has been described in the Bible.

In his article, Hernandez-Diaz analyzed the strategies of social change offered in Mujerista Theology and came to the conclusion that the patterns of Isasi-Diaz’s concepts and theories are very strong and simple at the same time; therefore, the representatives from different layers of the society can perceive them (Hernandez-Diaz 46). Such intelligibility of ideas and reflections makes Isasi-Diaz’s theology a social doctrine of justice oriented on all members of the society, but especially on the poor and neglected ones.

Another important fact is that the concepts are based on the everyday life, on the problems, which are common for the most of the Hispanic population and especially for women. As Hernandez-Dias has emphasized, subversive narratives, “mestizaje-mulatez”, and “locotidiano” are three main issues, which Isasi-Diaz highlights in her work (Hernandez-Diaz 47). The ethnographic research based on the interviews of Latinas, the discussion of hybridity, racial identity, of Christian ethics points out the main issues of Ada Maria’s analysis. The research on “lo cotidiano” said for the epistemological value of daily routine for the theological studies. Furthermore, the division of her theology into two moments: the reflection and the action, is of great importance. Consequently, as she pointed out, the above mentioned experiences and academic preparedness of the community member are the outstanding qualities, which are important for resolving various dilemmas and help to separate their religious understanding from sentiments ()Isasi-Diaz 561).

To sum it up, the ideas of Isasi -Diaz are contributing to the image of a just society, which should lack class analysis ethnic and racial prejudice. The female gender does not make the role of women and their decisions less important or less influential than the male ones. As people of the lower economic stratum should not be exploited and repressed, the same gender should not be an obstacle for the church representatives to judge. According to the theological point of view, those, who pray, believe in God, are to be equal. The beliefs, the academic preparedness should be the criteria for choosing those, who can participate in the church work.

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