• Patriarchy poisons religion: an in-depth analysis of religion and systems of power in Who Fears Death and the Parables duology

      Dawkins, Claire (2021-05)
      In their groundbreaking feminist dystopian novels, Nnedi Okorafor and Octavia Butler redefine what it means to be religious. Okorafor’s novel, Who Fears Death and Butler’s novels, Parable of the Sower and Parable of the Talents use the dystopian genre to expose how patriarchy and Christianity have benefited one another for a millennium. Patriarchy is built into the framework of Christianity, but it becomes only more powerful as language gets muddled and confused. When this happens, men are able to abuse and subjugate women under the pretense that it is religious, when it is not. But Butler and Okorafor do not leave us with this dire image. Instead, their protagonists, Lauren and Onyesonwu take harrowing journeys to overthrow the corrupt Christian religions in their respective texts with a new non-patriarchal religion. Unlike many feminist science fiction authors of recent, Butler and Okorafor are presenting the corruption that lives in Christianity, and as an alternative they offer a new religion.