Womanist Theology in Black Women's Narratives
This thesis examines the theology of the black woman, womanist theology, hoping to illustrate the black woman's unique interpretation of Christianity. I begin with a discussion of the theology. Through reviewing literature about black women in the black church, in black theology, and in feminist theology, I discuss the qualities which are unique to womanist theology. I mostly base my discussion about the theology, on works written by Delores S. Williams, a womanist theologian. The four fundamentals of the theology which Williams presents are then discussed. These fundamentals of the theology become the basis of my critiques of the narratives. The methodology of studying the novels is used because they express the experience of the black woman, and experience is the essence of the theology. I focus on three narratives by black women to illustrate womanist theology. I critique Alice Walker's The Color Purple, and Walker's Meridian, and Toni Morrison's Beloved. In each analysis, I discuss how the four fundamentals of womanist theology are portrayed in the novels. In addition to my own critique of each book, I look at literary reviews of the novels, and adapt them to my own theological analysis. Each narrative presents the theology differently which allows for a more vivid description of the black woman's experience. Through the discussion of each book, various aspects of womanist theology become evident, and the black woman's spirituality is revealed .
© Copyright 1991 Deborah L. Howe