Women, Identity and Religion in Wales is the first comprehensive study of its kind from a present-day perspective. It brings significant and original insights to an understanding of Welsh identity and religion, as well as exploring the distinctive pressures that women in Wales face in their everyday lives. The author provides a qualitatively rich account of the religious and sociological context and interweaves her own experience with that of a number of Welsh women writers, including Menna Elfyn, Jasmine Donahaye and Mererid Hopwood, to offer an in-depth understanding of the dynamic interplay between Welsh female identity and religion. At the heart of the book are conversations with thirteen other women whose lives and experiences reveal how women facing misogyny, repression and stigmatisation are able to respond with resilience and humour. The author concludes that Welsh women have an empowering stereotype, the Strong Woman, and are constructing new identities for themselves beyond the pressures to be respectable and submissive.
Manon Ceridwen James is the Director of Ministry in the diocese of St Asaph, Church in Wales, and is an honorary Canon of St Asaph Cathedral.
Acknowledgements Introduction 1 What Do We Mean by Identity? 2 Constructed Welsh Identities? 3 Wales, Religion and Identity 4 Religion, Women and Wales 5 Life Stories 6 Welsh Identity and Religion in Women's Writing 7 In Conversation with the Strong Woman 8 Constructing New Identities Appendix: Research Methods Notes Reference List Index