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date: 22 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

During the 1980s, womanist theology emerged as a corrective discipline to address the plight of global African diasporan women in general and of black women in the United States in particular. Coined by poet, novelist, and activist Alice Walker, the concept became a discipline after scholar-activist Katie G. Cannon adapted Walker’s definition as an analytical rubric. Cannon and others like Delores Williams, Jacqueline Grant, Cheryl Townsend Gilkes, and Emilie Townes began to use womanist thought to expose oppression and to correct some of the systemic and personal challenges faced by black people around the world. This essay examines themes, concepts, and categories that have been used, from an interdisciplinary perspective, in womanist theology as a corrective toward love as activism, to influence transformation as well as sociocultural, political, personal, physical, spiritual, mental, and communal wholeness. It looks at scholars who served as catalysts for nurturing womanist thought, including Chikwenye Okonjo Ogunyemi and Clenora Hudson-Weems.

Keywords: womanist theology, black women, Alice Walker, Katie G. Cannon, Delores Williams, Jacqueline Grant, Cheryl Townsend Gilkes, Emilie Townes, Chikwenye Okonjo Ogunyemi, Clenora Hudson-Weems

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