Angelica Tostes is a researcher at Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research, an institute connected to popular movements in the Global South, coordinator on the research project “Evangelicals, Politics and Grassroots Work”. External researcher at the Pontifical Catholic University of Goiás in Gender, Power and Religion. She is a feminist theologian and interfaith activist, a member of the Global Interfaith Network for People of All Sexes, Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Expression. She is interested in interreligious dialogue, feminist and queer theologies, and evangelicals in Brazilian politics.
Angelica Tostes, “Feminist Hermeneutics of the Land: evangelical women and the Landless Workers Movement in Brazil”
The present article aims to understand the feminist hermeneutics of the Bible from the evangelical women of Brazil’s Landless Workers Movement (Movimento dos Trabalhadores Sem Terra – MST), which is a mass social movement, formed by rural workers and by all those who want to fight for land reform and against injustice and social inequality in rural areas. In March 2020, just before COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic, Tricontinental’s research about Evangelicals and Politics went to the 1st National Meeting of Landless Women, held in Brasilia, which was attended by some 3500 women from different parts of the country.
At the meeting we interviewed 15 evangelical women, from several Brazilian states, and, later, 4 leaders of the movement, one being evangelical. Many of the women interviewed found in the movement the concreteness of their faith and in the Bible the path to struggle against injustices and fundamentalism. In one of the interviews, Luana, an evangelical activist from São Paulo, points out, “The struggle in the Bible… many women fought, were judges, defended their people, there are peasant women, in the Bible, I can do it too.” To analyze the interviews we will count on the methodological contributions of Latin American feminist theologians, such as Nancy Cardoso, Ivone Gebara, Elsa Tamez, and Maricel Mena Lopez.