Mary Daly, R.I.P.

Feminist theologian Mary Daly, who inspired many a 90s Woman, died on Sunday. Feministing has a nice write-up.

Daly was super radical and extreme, banning men from her classes. She was really easy to dismiss as a kook, but there was something in the way she wrote that was also really hard to ignore.

I remember reading her book Beyond God the Father in the library when I was studying religion in Montreal and suddenly having this totally different take on my whole course load. I felt super radicalized and made a real pest of myself in my Christian History class.

In retrospect, a lot of the matriarchy-as-true-world-history seems pretty dubious, but as we know now there was something to be said for questioning the Catholic Church the way she did back in the mid-’90s.

From her website:



Filed under Ada

5 responses to “Mary Daly, R.I.P.

  1. Kathy

    My first job in publishing was at Beacon Press, which published Mary Daly. During my first week of employment, Daly told me to “fuck off” and then hung up on me. Our salty exchanges made me the strong person I am today.

  2. Wow, not the best advertisement for a matriarchy!

    • Kathy

      Well, she was tough and scary, and she was smart and vulnerable. And she showed me that people aren’t nice or even civil all of the time. I’d say it was educational.

  3. tough, scary, smart, vulnerable=my ideal woman. i kind of love that second wave feminists would do things like refuse to let men into their classes, even if that seems like the wrong thing to do now.–kara

  4. mh

    I’ve been baffled for days as to why her page is linking to World Can’t Wait, and all the rest of the content is down. Was she even a communist? A Bolshevik? Did they somehow take over her site? I can’t sleep at night wondering these things.

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