Unruly Catholic Women Writers: Creative Responses to Catholicism

Jeana DelRosso, Leigh Eicke, Ana Kothe
PhD,
Excelsior Editions/State University of New York, 2013

This unique literary anthology is devoted to unruly Catholic women. In short stories, poems, personal essays, and drama, the contributors describe women’s struggles with Catholicism and also complicate contemporary understandings of women’s relationships to their faith. Catholicism often oppresses the women in these creative pieces, but it also inspires them to challenge literary, social, political, and religious hierarchies. The collection reflects the considerations of a wide range of women from a variety of ethnic backgrounds, geographic locations, and generations; they encompass the gamut of reactions to the Catholic experience—humor, anger, nostalgia, critique, appreciation, and engagement or rejection on one’s own terms. Authors address real life versus Catholic dogma, motherhood, childhood, alienation from the Church, Catholic school days, mentors and exemplary figures, Church strictures on women’s sexualities, and leaving or remaining in the Church among many other experiences. Readers will find this a rich and multifaceted exploration, one that offers new perspectives and moments of recognition.