A Garland of Feminist Reflections: Forty Years of Religious Exploration / Edition 1

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Rita M. Gross has long been acknowledged as a founder in the field of feminist theology. One of the earliest scholars in religious studies to discover how feminism affects that discipline, she is recognized as preeminent in Buddhist feminist theology. The essays in A Garland of Feminist Reflections represent the major aspects of her work and provide an overview of her methodology in women's studies in religion and feminism. The introductory article, written specifically for this volume, summarizes the conclusions Gross has reached about gender and feminism after forty years of searching and exploring, and the autobiography, also written for this volume, narrates how those conclusions were reached. These articles reveal the range of scholarship and reflection found in Rita M. Gross's work and demonstrate how feminist scholars in the 1970s shifted the paradigm away from an androcentric model of humanity and forever changed the way we study religion.

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Editorial Reviews

Shambhala Sun

In this book, the reader absorbs the intelligence of Rita Gross’ mind, the frustrations and sorrows of her role as a reformer, her perseverance and her yearning.”
Feminist Review
“An indispensable collection of her best collected writing from the past forty years. . . . Gross’ writing is strikingly beautiful.”
“This compilation only whets the reader’s appetite for another such volume.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520255869
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 3/5/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 352
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Rita M. Gross is Professor Emerita of Comparative Studies in Religion at the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire. She is the author and editor of many books, including Religious Feminism and the Future of the Planet: A Buddhist-Christian-Feminist Conversation.

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Table of Contents


Introducing A Garland of Feminist Reflections
1. How Did This Ever Happen to Me? A Wisconsin Farm Girl Who Became a Buddhist Theologian When She Grew Up

2. Androcentrism and Androgyny in the Methodology of History of Religions
3. Where Have We Been? Where Do We Need to Go? Key Questions for Women Studies in Religion and Feminist Theology
4. The Place of the Personal and the Subjective in Religious Studies
5. Methodology: Tool or Trap? Comments from a Feminist Perspective
6. What Went Wrong? Feminism and Freedom from the Prison of Gender Roles

7. Menstruation and Childbirth as Ritual and Religious Experience among Native Australians
8. Toward a New Model of the Hindu Pantheon: A Report on Twenty-Some Years of Feminist Reflection
9. The Prepatriarchal Hypothesis: An Assessment

10. Steps toward Feminine Imagery in Jewish Theology
11. Is the (Hindu) Goddess a Feminist?
12. Life-Giving Images in Vajrayana Buddhist Ritual
13. Feminist Theology as Theology of Religions

14. The Clarity in the Anger
15. Why (Engaged) Buddhists Should Care about Gender Issues
16. The Dharma of Gender
17. Yeshe Tsogyel: Enlightened Consort, Great Teacher, Female Role Model
18. Buddhist Women and Teaching Authority
19. Is the Glass Half-Empty or Half-Full? A Feminist Assessment of Buddhism at the Beginning of the Twenty-first Century
20. Being a North American Buddhist Woman: Reflections of a Feminist Pioneer


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