Degree Name

MALS (Master of Arts in Liberal Studies)


Liberal Studies

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Keith Green

Committee Members

Marie Tedesco, Thomas Crofts


While the Second Vatican Council advocates an inclusive priesthood and unified People of God, exclusion of consecrated Roman Catholic women from ministerial priesthood, official church interpretations of the scriptures, and judgments concerning faith and morals continues. This thesis examines creative tactics of resistance among consecrated women on account of hierarchal and essentialist models found in church traditions, including Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179), Teresa of Avila (1515-1582), and contemporary American women associated with the Leadership Conference of Women Religious. I analyze aspects of three prophetic critiques and hermeneutical tactics of each, appealing to the critical interpretive methodologies of Elizabeth Bucar and Grace Jantzen. The LCWR are “in good company,” contrary to the representations of male superiors in the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith and episcopal hierarchy. The feminist resistance of these women recapitulates forms of what Bucar calls “creative conformity,” which the church has embraced for its forbearers.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.