5. The Body in Doubt: Catholic Literature, Theology, and Sexual Abuse

John C. Waldmeir

in Cathedrals of Bone

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print June 2009 | ISBN: 9780823230600
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823236923 | DOI:
5. The Body in Doubt: Catholic Literature, Theology, and Sexual Abuse

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This chapter examines the presentation of clergy sexual abuse and its consequences in literature. In Robert Cooperman's collection of poems titled The Trials of Mary McCormick, he tries to dramatize how the actions of individual abusers and victims occur in institutional frameworks. In Doubt: A Parable, playwright John Patrick Shanley raises the issue of doubt in Sister Aloysius's suspicion that Father Flynn is sexually abusing Mrs. Muller's teenage son. In Mary Karr' 1995 novel The Liar's Club, she relates her experience in being sexually abused as a child by figures she understood to be in positions of authority.

Keywords: clergy sexual abuse; The Trials of Mary McCormick; Robert Cooperman; Doubt: A Parable; John Patrick Shanley; The Liar's Club; Mary Karr

Chapter.  11839 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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