Memoirs and Meaning

Jill Ker Conway

in Believing Scholars

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print October 2005 | ISBN: 9780823225255
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823236589 | DOI:
Memoirs and Meaning

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This chapter reflects on Jill Ker Conway's spiritual journey and the way her Catholic faith had affected her scholarly life. Her Christian faith has led her interests in the moral and spiritual dimensions of the journey in time people make. The chapter focuses on the way people narrate life histories and the forms and conventions which define what can be thought and said about those travels. It also compares narratives written by Margaret Sanger, leader of the birth control movement in the United States, and Jane Addams, founder of The Hull House and the profession of social work, with the standard male narrative. In the female narrative, she is distancing herself from the action she herself has brought about. This style of narrative is in sharp contrast to the standard male narrative, in which planning, action, and agency are the main themes.

Keywords: Conway; Christian faith; Margaret Sanger; Jane Addams; birth control movement; male narrative; female narrative

Chapter.  4028 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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