Unequal Partners: In Search of Transnational Catholic Sisterhood

Unequal Partners: In Search of Transnational Catholic Sisterhood

by Casey Ritchie Clevenger

Paperback(First Edition)

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When we think of Catholicism, we think of Europe and the United States as the seats of its power. But while much of Catholicism remains headquartered in the West, the Church’s center of gravity has shifted to Africa, Latin America, and developing Asia. Focused on the transnational Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, Unequal Partners explores the ways gender, race, economic inequality, and colonial history play out in religious organizations, revealing how their members are constantly negotiating and reworking the frameworks within which they operate.

Taking us from Belgium and the United States to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, sociologist Casey Clevenger offers rare insight into how the sisters of this order work across national boundaries, shedding light on the complex relationships among individuals, social groups, and formal organizations. Throughout, Clevenger skillfully weaves the sisters’ own voices into her narrative, helping us understand how the order has remained whole over time. A thoughtful analysis of the ties that bind—and divide—the sisters, Unequal Partners is a rich look at transnationalism’s ongoing impact on Catholicism.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780226697550
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 05/06/2020
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Casey Ritchie Clevenger is a sociologist of religion and gender who lives in Chicago with her partner and three children.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Batteries, Crosses, Solar Panels, and Global Sisterhood

Chapter 2. Julie Is Our Ancestor: Unearthing the Roots of Transnationalism

Chapter 3. Like Night and Day: Sisters’ Personal and Communal Religious Practices in Two Places

Chapter 4. Pathways to Religious Life for American and Congolese Women

Chapter 5. A Life of Ministries

Chapter 6. Mission Is Everything: Sisters on the Frontiers of Ministry in Greater Boston

Chapter 7. Poverty, Development, and the Challenges of Catholic Sisterhood in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Conclusion: Circling Back and Looking Forward

Appendix: Research Methodology

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