Woven Apart and Weaving Together  
    Conflict and Mutuality in Feminist and Pagan Communities in Britain
                                                             by  Ann-Marie Gallagher
        Historian Ann-Marie Gallagher is Subject and Course Leader in Women’s Studies at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, U.K., where she has taught history and women’s studies for seven years. An historian by training, she researches and publishes in the areas of cultural history, feminist pedagogy and women and spirituality. She is currently editing a book on women and history titled Changing the Past:  Women, History and Representation, which is scheduled to be published in 2000.  In addition, she guests on national and regional radio, speaking on Witchcraft, paganism and women’s issues, and provides free workshops for women on magic and spirituality at national events.  A feminist Witch and mainly solo-worker, Ann-Marie works occasionally with other women engaged in developing their own spiritual paths.  She currently lives in Lancashire with her three children and five cats.

        Gallagher explores some of the tensions between Witchcraft and feminism in Britain. These tensions arise from the Wiccan belief in gender bipolarity and from feminist Marxist materialism, which sees all spirituality as false consciousness.  In her chapter, Gallagher argues that the feminist anti-spirituality stance denies women agency and assumes a dichotomous and masculinist separation of the spiritual and the material.  Interviews with pagan feminists in chapter two reveal a use of language that reflects a different understanding of the concepts of gender and political activism.  Pagan feminists may not refer to themselves as political activists, but clearly the women interviewed are actively subversive.  Gallagher concludes that thealogy, like feminism itself, is praxis-based and so it too is fertile ground for transformational politics.

Ann-Marie Gallagher's email

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