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The Laywoman ProjectRemaking Catholic Womanhood in the Vatican II Era$
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Mary J. Henold

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469654492

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469654492.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 05 July 2022

Faithful Daughters

Faithful Daughters

(p.148) 4 Faithful Daughters
The Laywoman Project

Mary J. Henold

University of North Carolina Press

Chapter four explores how two conservative, fraternal orders for Catholic laywomen – the Catholic Daughters of America (CDA) and the Daughters of Isabella (DI) – experienced the upheavals of feminism and Vatican II. The two groups attempted to reassess their organizations and beliefs in the wake of Vatican II, seriously considering new ways of viewing both Catholicism and Catholic womanhood. Ultimately, however, the groups rejected new conceptions of laywomen’s identity and vocations, affirming complementarity and female difference. Analysis of their records suggests that these laywomen perceived their power to be linked to traditional perceptions of Catholic womanhood and their own obedience to authority. As a backlash to the changes of Vatican II began in the mid-1970s, they had little incentive to adjust their worldview.

Keywords:   Catholic Daughters of America (CDA), Daughters of Isabella (DI), Feminism, Complementarity, Vatican II, Backlash, Catholic laywomen

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