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Eileen Markey, CUNY-Lehman College

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Allies, Rebels and Traitors in the Pews of the Bronx: Liberation Theology's Northern Reach, Eileen Markey, CUNY-Lehman College

This paper explores the shared anti-imperial inheritance of two groups of Catholics engaged in community organizing in the South Bronx in the 1970s and 80s. In key instances, Puerto Rican parishioners and Irish American clergy and religious sisters drew on personal histories of resistance to empire in their local work during the years when the Bronx burned and was rebuilt. A hemispheric discourse born of experiences of solidarity and encounter in the global south informed organizing across racial and ethnic lines. This urban Catholic organizing inverted institutions to build communion and seek justice.

Respondent: Deborah Kanter, Albion College