Resetting The Table is a podcast located at the intersection of faith & spirituality, culture & ideas, and daily life, hosted by Maria Mulder, Trixie Ling, and Céline Chuang. Through conversations on this podcast, we aim to unlearn dominant and oppressive norms, showcase BIPOC perspectives and brilliance, and expand imagination around race, place, and faith for our collective liberation.
In this episode, Maria, Trixie, and Céline discuss their relationships to their own bodies, and talk body hair, body shaming, beauty standards, white feminism, and problematic definitions of womanhood. They explore how the policing of bodies' presentation is connected to the upholding of the gender binary and colonial racial categories—and how marginal expressions of beauty, culture, and gender can be a form of resistance. Also, there's ranting about purity culture. This episode is a JOURNEY; buckle in!
A note on language: Céline uses the words “white womanhood” and “white femininity” to describe the intersection of whiteness, or white supremacy, with ideas of femininity and womanhood as enforced by the gender binary. She is not referring to white women specifically, but to the power structures that create and uphold the categories of white and woman.
Language matters, and we’re always learning how we can align our words and conversation closer with generosity and liberation. Got a tip? Email us at email@example.com.
Episode Notes & Annotations
Maria references White Tears/Brown Scars: How White Feminism Betrays Women of Color by Ruby Hamad.
Céline references Cornel West, specifically, the chapter “A Genealogy of Modern Racism” from Prophesy Deliverance: An Afro-American Revolutionary Christianity.
The hosts mention two episodes of Reclaiming My Theology podcast with Brandi Miller: Dualism with Randy Woodley, and White American Folk Religion with Jonathan Walton.
Céline’s use of queer theory to interrogate ideas of hair, beauty, race, and gender, is learned in large part from non-binary scholar & social media educator Alok Vain-Menon. Check out their book reports, like “Womanhood as a Racial Project” if you’re interested in reading more on these topics.
In this episode, Celine and Maria talk with Métis plant educator and herbalist Lori Snyder on healing our relationship to the land, guerrilla gardening as decolonization, the wisdom of plants, and aligning our personal practices with the creativity and abundance of the living world. Lori shares a wealth of wisdom on living in wonder and reciprocity with the earth in an age of climate crisis, and our joyful responsibility for reverence and integrity with our non-human relations. We’re so excited to share this enlivening conversation with you!
Transcript available: http://bit.ly/3aqdb91
Where to find Lori online:
Facebook page: Earth Awareness Realized Through Health, Instagram: @earthandcompany
Lori’s website: https://www.lorisnyder.co/. Lori also has an online course on medicinal plants available here: https://foraging.teachable.com/p/medicinal-plants-of-the-pacific-northwest. Alongside with Laura Cisneros, she leads “In Harmony With Nature” as Artist in Residence at Hastings Community Centre (https://inharmonywithnatur.wixsite.com/inharmonywithnature).
Articles about Lori:
“Metis Herbalist and Educator Lori Snyder on Urban Foraging and Food Sovereignty” on Food Network: https://www.foodnetwork.ca/food-network-insider/blog/metis-herbalist-educator-lori-snyder-urban-foraging-food-sovereignty/
“Vancouver Métis herbalist helps seed reconciliation with medicine wheel garden” on Vancouver Sun: https://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/vancouver-metis-herbalist-helps-seed-reconciliation-with-medicine-wheel-garden
Episode Notes & Annotations:
Lori and Celine reference Robin Wall Kimmerer, especially her book Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants.
Lori mentions Bruce Lipton when talking about the quantum field of living things, who is a biologist, writer and speaker whose groundbreaking work bridges science and spirit. Here’s a captivating essay Celine found, called “Embracing the Immaterial Universe” on his website: https://www.brucelipton.com/embracing-the-immaterial-universe/
Lori mentions the detrimental effects of monocrops in the prairies, which this article in Briarpatch explores in depth as connected to settler-colonialism: “Decolonizing Ecology”: https://briarpatchmagazine.com/articles/view/decolonizing-ecology
Celine references Randy Woodley’s use of “Eurocene,” rather than “Anthropocene,” which is from a presentation Randy gave at Inhabit Conference 2020 called “Welcome to the Eurocene: How White Supremacy is Driving Humanity to Extinction.”
In this episode, Trixie, Celine, and Maria unpack their experiences growing up and breaking up with White Jesus, the damaging assumed default of whiteness when depicting the Divine, and how White Jesus functions to uphold the power of those at the top of the social and political hierarchy. They also discuss problematic white saviourism as apparent in colonialism (both historic and contemporary iterations), missions, and development work, and re-envision liberatory ways to represent God, Christ, and the sacred, as well as to reclaim cultural practices in decolonizing their spiritual journeys.
Transcript available: https://resettingthetablepodcast.blogspot.com/2021/02/episode-2-on-unlearning-white-jesus.html
Follow Resetting The Table on Instagram: instagram.com/re.settingthetable
Support Resetting The Table on Patreon: patreon.com/resettingthetable
Episode Notes & Annotations:
Celine mentions Black liberation theologian James Cone, specifically his book “The Cross and the Lynching Tree.”
Trixie mentions mujerista theology as a form of liberation theology, such as the work and writing of Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz.
The hosts mention the podcast Reclaiming My Theology as an "adopted ancestor," or auntie podcast to Resetting The Table. The specific episodes that relate most to this one are on Paternalism, Objectivity, and White Centering.
Celine mentions white saviourism as not just a symptom of church and faith spaces, but also prevalent in the non-profit and development sphere. For more on this, see Teju Cole’s 2012 essay “The White Saviour Industrial Complex,” and “No White Saviours,” a women-led advocacy group in Uganda (https://www.instagram.com/nowhitesaviors).
In our first full-length episode, Céline, Trixie, and Maria contextualize anti-Black racism in Canada from an East Asian perspective and discuss the importance of foregrounding Black lives and Black liberation in anti-racism work. We talk about holding a posture of openness, unlearning dominant narratives, uncovering hidden histories, and how anger can be a generative force for change.
Transcript available: https://resettingthetablepodcast.blogspot.com/2021/01/episode-1-on-anti-racism-asian.html
Follow Resetting The Table on Instagram: https://instagram.com/re.settingthetable
Support Resetting The Table on Patreon: https://patreon.com/resettingthetable
Episode Notes & Annotations:
In this episode we speak from our own experience as East Asians, and don’t discuss how anti-Asian racism intersects with Islamophobia for some of our South Asian siblings (a form of racism and xenophobia which long predates the pandemic, notably rising after 9/11). We plan to unpack Islamophobia more in a future episode. If you want to point us to any relevant resources, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM us on Instagram.
The concept of “conditional belonging” that Celine references, especially in the context of the Coronavirus, was written about by actor John Cho for the LA Times.
Celine and Trixie reference Austin Channing Brown’s book, “I’m Still Here,” specifically the chapter on anger, which is based on Audre Lorde’s 1981 talk “The Uses of Anger” (available to read online at https://www.blackpast.org/african-american-history/1981-audre-lorde-uses-anger-women-responding-racism/).
Maria references Hogan’s Alley (https://www.hogansalleysociety.org/) when talking about learning Black History in local contexts, specifically Vancouver.
Celine references The Secret Life of Canada podcast episode “The Secret Life of Birchtown” on Black History and slavery in Canada (https://www.stitcher.com/show/the-secret-life-of-canada/episode/the-secret-life-of-birchtown-52013370).
Trixie mentions Reclaiming My Theology, a podcast that inspired our own, which is about taking theology back from oppressive systems and ideas (https://www.reclaimingmytheology.com/).
Celine mentions two foundational books for understanding anti-Black racism in Canada: The Skin We’re In by Desmond Cole and Policing Black Lives by Robyn Maynard. She also mentions The First Rainbow Coalition documentary: https://www.ket.org/program/independent-lens/the-first-rainbow-coalition/.
The piece we mention in the prelude is “Police response to storming of U.S. Capitol should not surprise anyone” by Sandy Hudson: https://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/opinion-police-response-us-capitol-building-racism-1.5864611
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Welcome to Resetting The Table, where we expand imagination around race, place, and faith for our collective liberation. In this trailer, we give a taste of the many conversations and topics to come. Subscribe and join us on the journey! Find us on Patreon at patreon.com/resettingthetable.