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Journal article by member: Considering a Case for Rights and Charity

08/15/2022 3:30 PM | Anne Masters

Hi! I'm a relatively new member of CTSA and would like to share my recently published article, "Considering a case for rights and charity." In it I point out the problems of each and propose the benefits of joining forces, specifically pertaining to persons with disabilities (PWD). Violations of the rights of PWD is typically contextually dependent and difficult to generalize, and the burden of proof is on the person whose rights have been violated. However, the predominantly operative coopted version of charity is also problematic. It is well entrenched in religious imaginations with deep roots and the predominant thread of a metanarrative I named the shadow narrative. The shadow narrative claims concern for PWD (mostly), but in fact reinforces the stigmatizing and marginalizing mindsets, and their unconscious motivations. Rational argument cannot counter the emotions that maintain it. It is necessary to bring it into the open, and highlight cultural insertions into the charity tradition that undermine it and the people it claims to serve. Then a recovered sense of charity, concerned with justice, can be a valuable partner with rights to affirm the dignity and participation of PWD in society and faith communities. I write through lens of Catholic social teaching, but the principles discussed are applicable within other faith traditions.  

Anne Masters (2022) Considering a case for rights and charity, International, Journal for the Study of the Christian Church, 22:1, 58-74, DOI: 10.1080/1474225X.2022.2055330 

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