Luce Irigaray and the threshold of the divine

in Literature, theology and feminism
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This chapter argues that Luce Irigaray's work has great significance for religious feminists seeking new reading strategies and new means of understanding the relations between literature and theology. The narrative of Irigaray's expulsion from her lecturing position can be seen as a parabolic representation of the thesis of Speculum. This is that the symbolic order functions continually to silence women and annihilate their cultural specificity. Although Irigaray moves in a similar way to Jacques Derrida when she assumes the role of the philosopher's wife, she is, at the same time, seeking to nurture the birth of a new language. Irigaray is familiar with the Belgian traditions of powerful women mystics living independent lives and making audacious speculations on the divine. The chapter suggests that Irigaray's reflections on the sensible transcendental point to an understanding of the divine economy which aids in reconceptualising the threshold that exists between literature and theology.

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