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RELG 1641 (19)

Religion, the Body, and Sexuality 8.docx

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Mount Allison University
Religious Studies
RELG 1641
Fiona Black

Purity Laws Continued  Kosher symbols are a commentary on conditions in which the foods were manufactured  brings people together, establishes community  "because it is written"  helped people manage food better in a nomadic lifestyle  why are women singled out for being responsible for purity? o all Abrahamic traditions have some beliefs surrounding women's purity o ancient practices connected female bodies with cleanliness o even found in matriarchal indigenous religions  observing purity laws improves quality of the marriage- focuses sex on reproduction  Mary Douglas- anthropologist o "Purity in Danger"- each religion is a universe unto itself, has its own laws, anything that does not fit the laws is dangerous  Judaism is concerned with maintaining separation from others  purity laws regulate the universe- keep the boundaries of the tradition intact  how human cultures create communities  laws are needed to create Jewish community  rejects Julie Kristeva's theories  Julie Kristeva- feminist psychoanalyst o abjection- food loathing is the most archaic and fundamental abjection  through the process of individuation (process of becoming an individual- from the semiotic realm of the mother to the symbolic realm)- the individual must reject certain aspects of the mother that are perceived to contaminate us (some foods, bodily fluids, especially signs of illness and death)  also on a social level- colonial British racism (ahistoricity), criminals (in jail)  everytime you come in contact with contaminating concepts/materials, you must reject them o human beings reject women's bodies because they are regularly
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