The role of biblical interpretation in the construction of sexual identity in christian Sunday school material for children: a re-reading of Genesis 3 and Matthew 1.18-25 from a feminist and queer perspective.
Blanco, Karoline Mora.
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Christian churches have played an important role in socializing its members on how to behave in society. It is in these dynamics of creating Christian identities that a process of sexual socialization takes place. However, teachings about sexuality are not as explicit and common in Church, but instead, it seems to be a silent process where ambiguous ideas have emerged and which could even be in contradiction among themselves. These ideas have unfortunately promoted patriarchal roles of gender, sexual violent relationships and the imposition of a normative sexuality. In spite of the lack of evident engagement with sexuality that is found in the church, sexual socialization is happening almost inadvertently since very early ages through Sunday school narratives for children. This research identifies theologies that work on issues of gender, sexuality and body within the biblical faith, and argues that theses theologies must be taken into account by the church in order to fill the present lack of engagement and proposes a different way to think sexuality from a Christian perspective. It is through the keystones of African feminist theology, body theology, indecent theology, queer theologies, and the methodology of deconstructive literary analysis, that I intend to show how particular narratives of Sunday school material construct and socialize a normative sexual identity with children. The relevance of this study remains in its careful analysis of the sexual socialization of children through the narratives of the Sunday school material, and the preoccupation for recognizing the different ways of interpreting and sharing with children the biblical texts. To conclude the research I suggest a new reading of the biblical stories shared in the Sunday school material, a reading that promotes sexual rights.