Ángel F. Méndez Montoya
He was born in Mexicali, BC, Mexico. He was a cooperator brother in the Order of Preachers (Southern Dominican Province, USA) and is currently a member of the Order of Preachers Laity (OPL) at the International Institute of Theology, Marie Dominique Chenu, in Berlin, Germany. He was a professional dancer and co-founder of the company U, X. ONODANZA (Mexico City) and a dancer of the Sharir Dance Company of the University at Texas (Austin, TX).
He earned a BA in Dance and Philosophy from the University of Texas, Austin, TX; Master of Philosophy at St. Louis University; Master of Theology and Master of Divinities, at Aquinas Institute of Theology. He earned his Ph.D. in Philosophical Theology from the University of Virginia and wrote his doctoral thesis as a Scholar in Residence at the University of Cambridge, UK, under the supervision of John Milbank.
In 2009 his doctoral thesis was published by Wiley-Blackwell, at Oxford, under the title, The Theology of Food: Eating and the Eucharist. This work has been nominated for the 2011 Michael Ramsey Prize for Excellence in Theological Writing, awarded by Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury. In December 2010, this same book has been published by the JUS publishing house, under the title, Festín del deseo: hacia una teología alimentaria, having a new Spanish publication by Aliosventos, with a prologue by Juan Villoro.
He is a full-time professor and researcher at the Department of Religious Sciences (DCR) at the Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City, where he was coordinator of the Master’s in Theology and Contemporary World, and of the Revista Iberoamericana de Teología (RIBET). He currently directs the research line in the DCR, “Theology, Hermeneutics and Praxis of Religious Experience” (THPER. He teaches courses, seminars and conferences at various universities and academic institutes both in the country and abroad.
He has been visiting professor at: Blackfriars-Oxord University (GB); School of Divinity-Cambridge University (UK); Kirchliche Hocschule, Wuppertal (Germany); Oblate School of Theology, San Antonio, TX (USA); The Candler School of Theology, Atlanta (USA); Pacific School of Religion (University of California, Berkeley); Augustana Kirchliche Hochschule (Germany).
He has published in various anthologies and in national and international journals, including Revista Christus; Annals of Anthropology; New Black-Friars; Concilium; CrossCurrents; Wort Und Antwort; Modern Theology; The Bible InTransmission; Sophia’s; The Crucible. He has compiled several anthologies, among which are Pan, hambre y trascendencia: diálogo interdisciplinar sobre la construcción simbólica del comer, Mexico: Ibero, 2009; Edward Schillebeeckx. Impulse für Theologien, Germany: Gunewald, 2012; El arte y las provoaciones teológicas: dialogos emergentes entre las artes, la teoría estética, la teología y los estudios críticos de la religión, Mexico: Ibero, 2020; Paradojas de lo liminal. Cine y teología, México: Ibero, 2021.
Ángel F. Méndez Montoya, “DIOS CUIR: Intersecting Religion from Decolonial Diasporic Bodies through the Spanish Version of The Queer God by Marcella Althaus-Reid”
It is a great honor to welcome the long-awaited translation from English into Spanish of the relevant and provocative book by Argentinian queer theologian Marcella Althaus-Reid (1952-2009), Dios cuir, published in 2022 by the Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City Campus (The Queer God. London: Routledge, 2003). Undoubtedly, this important theological work not only opens new pathways in contemporary theology, but also offers new hermeneutical tools to articulate experiences of God from diverse sex-gender experiences, particularly from Latin American and decolonial contexts, intersecting issues related to religion, gender, sexualities, race, and ethnicity, including all the world’s discarded bodies and societies.
Marcella is one of the main pioneers of the so-called “queer theology,” a theology that emerges from experiences that go beyond heteropatriarchal whitewashed hegemonies and colonial epistemologies, critically reflecting upon the subordination of diverse identities, and encouraging the agency of individuals and groups that live precariously.
The translation into Spanish of the term “queer” as “cuir,” therefore, tries to preserve the legacy of emancipatory movements and theories, but phonetically hybridizes this notion to incarnate marginal experiences mainly in the global South, particularly on the periphery of Latin America and the Caribbean. The fact that it is almost twenty years after The Queer God was published in English without previously appearing in Spanish – Marcella’s mother tongue – reveals a theological attitude constricted in the closet of its own totalitarian idiosyncrasies and practices of exclusion of “the indecent other.”
Marcella invites us to bring God out of the closet, to let the divine kenotic movement find us, a Trinitarian, relational, love community that offers itself radically and incarnates in those spaces of exile and nomadic kinesthesia, in the daily narratives of the indecent, interweaving popular spiritualities and hybridizing the cosmologies of the original peoples. This conference addresses some key challenges that this text presents to liberation theologies in the world today.