New article for Campus Progress on RADICAL FEMINIST THEOLOGIAN Mary Daly:

Susan Ross, chair of Loyola University Chicago’s Department of Theology, has been teaching for 29 years. In an email interview, Ross calls the impact of feminism on the academic environment “enormous.”

“Before Vatican II (1962-1965), women—and most laypeople—did not study theology at an advanced level. It was mostly studied in seminaries by priests and priest candidates, obviously men,” Ross writes.

Today’s academic programs focused on divinity and theological programs have changed drastically. In the 2009-2010 academic year, 42.5 percent of students enrolled in graduate and certification level theology programs were women, according to a study conducted by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, an organization that comprises more than 250 academic departments in North America. That’s a far cry from programs that didn’t allow students to study theology on the basis of gender alone.

“My first students in a ‘Women and Religion’ class thought that we would study ‘The Blessed Mother’ and Joan of Arc,” Ross writes. “To even mention gays or lesbians would trigger snickers or outright condemnation.” According to Ross, today’s students “expect to get feminist theory and, especially when it comes to LBGTQ issues, are much more knowledgeable and informed.” READ MORE