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Decolonizing EpistemologiesLatina/o Theology and Philosophy$
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Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz and Eduardo Mendieta

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780823241354

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823241354.001.0001

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If It Is Not Catholic, Is It Popular Catholicism? Evil Eye, Espiritismo, and Santería: Latina/o Religion within Latina/o Theology

If It Is Not Catholic, Is It Popular Catholicism? Evil Eye, Espiritismo, and Santería: Latina/o Religion within Latina/o Theology

Chapter:
(p.151) If It Is Not Catholic, Is It Popular Catholicism? Evil Eye, Espiritismo, and Santería: Latina/o Religion within Latina/o Theology
Source:
Decolonizing Epistemologies
Author(s):

Michelle A. González

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823241354.003.0008

Through a synthesis of personal ethnography, sociological and theological reflection, author Michelle González takes aim at the Christocentric, church-focused, and hyperphilosophical discourse of recent Latina/o theology. By focusing on three forms of popular religiosity, González aims to show that if Latina/o theologians are to address the religious needs of Latinas/os they must take seriously practices that church hierarchy and orthodox Catholic theology deride and frown on. Evil Eye, Santería, and Espiritismo are syncretic forms of Christianity that decenter religious practice, relocating it in ritual and communal memory. The chapter argues that if Latina/o theologians are to give credence to the epistemic productivity of Latina/o communities, they must challenge their orthodox Catholic assumptions, namely a focus on textual exegeses that presupposes a hierarchical system of knowledge certification that always devalues the experiences of subjects.

Keywords:   Evil Eye, Santeria, Espiristimo, popular Catholicism, religious syncretism, Catholic theology

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