A Dark Green Religious Analysis of the Life and Work of Wangari Maathai (1940 - 2011)
AbstractDark Green Religion (DGR), is an umbrella term formulated by Bron Taylor, to describe nature revering movements that do not fit into the category of organized religion. These movements use religious-like emotions to express their convictions and display a sincere commitment towards the environment. A central focus of DGR is a deep-felt kinship with all living organisms on Earth (arising from a Darwinian understanding that all forms of life have developed from a common ancestor), accompanied by feelings of humility coupled with a critical view of human moral superiority. This article presents a Dark Green Religious analysis of the life and work of Wangari Maathai (1940-2011). She was the first woman in East Africa to receive a doctorate, and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004 for her work with the Green Belt Movement (GBM). In the DGR analysis, it is illustrated that the principles of belonging, interconnectedness and sacredness are revealed through Maathai’s written legacy. Evidence is also presented that she could be viewed as an example of Naturalistic Gaianism, one of the four types of DGR. In conclusion, a link between ecofeminism and DGR is proposed by highlighting the shared concepts between the two phenomena.
Copyright (c) 2021 Desmond Tutu Centre for Religion and Social Justice
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.