In this project, I attempt to put Chandra Mohanty's feminist solidarity theory paired with Paulo Freire's liberatory educational methods into practice through a Bible study in South Africa. Continuing the feminist conversations on building solidarity and creating equitable relationships across differences, I take an interdisciplinary approach to what Judith Stacey describes as a "partial feminist ethnography." Mohanty promotes a solidarity that challenges feminist Eurocentricism, seeks an understanding of contextual location, and works to connect people across borders valuing difference in addition to commonalities. Freire emphasizes that equitable environments must encourage critical engagement within dialogue, diminishing subject-object relationships, and balancing power through loving interactions to create an "unshakable solidarity." I facilitated a three session Bible study with a group of Zulu, Xhosa, and English women in a Methodist church in South Africa on Matthew 15: 21-28, the story of Jesus' interaction with the Canaanite woman. By analyzing the power dynamics within the Bible studies, I reflect upon my role as a Christian American white middle-class woman researcher and facilitator, and my search for moments of solidarity.


Craven, Christa

Second Advisor

Kammer III, Charles


Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies; Religious Studies


Biblical Studies | Women's Studies


feminist solidarity, feminism, solidarity, liberation theology, south africa, power, bible study, women, global feminism, cross-cultural interaction

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



© Copyright 2011 Abigail Heimach