Lucy Thokozile Chibambo
Lucy T Chibambo (PhD) is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Religion Philosophy and Classics (SRPC), University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. She is a member of the Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians and CHART. She has worked as research assistance for Professor Jone Solomonsen from Norway, Ms Viviane Barbosa from Brazil and Professor Isabel Apawo Phiri from South Africa. She is the author of the book Cultural Practices, HIV and AIDS and the Church in Nsanje District – Malawi, Beau Bassin: VDM Publishing House Ltd, 2010. Her search interests include HIV and AIDS, cultural practices, and African proverbs.
“Childbirth Impurity: Gender Discrimination in Leviticus 12”
Childbirth cultural practices have been part of African community, since the existence of human beings. They are regarded as part of social, spiritual and hygienic ways of caring for a mother who has given birth. Additionally, childbirth is a social cultural event celebrated in honouring the mother who has given birth; because in most African societies a fertile female is celebrated compared to a barren female. However, the purpose of this study is to explore the influence of Hebrew Bible belief in Leviticus12 concerning gender holiness and discrimination, due to childbirth. According to the Hebrew Bible belief, a woman who has just given birth is perceived unclean. Therefore, she has to be isolated and not involve in any religious and community activities. Until she is declared pure, according to Hebrew Bible belief. Her process of cleansing is prolonged if she gives birth to a girl child compared to the birth of a boy child. The question to be asked is: In what way does the Hebrew Bible influence gender discrimination due to childbirth? Content analysis will be used as a tool of gathering and analysing the existing data in this study. This study uses, theories of “accessible God” and feminist cultural hermeneutics as tools to analyse life-denying cultural practices and perceptions rooted in the Hebrew Bible Leviticus12.