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The Catholic Studies Reader$
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James T. Fisher and Margaret M. McGuinness

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780823234103

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823234103.001.0001

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Working Toward an Inclusive Narrative

Working Toward an Inclusive Narrative

A Call for Interdisciplinarity and Ethnographic Reflexivity in Catholic Studies

Chapter:
(p.309) 14 Working Toward an Inclusive Narrative
Source:
The Catholic Studies Reader
Author(s):

JAMES T. FISHER

MARGARET M. MCGUINNESS

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823234103.003.0015

The author, a non-Catholic anthropologist of religion, raises some questions and concerns that have come up for her as an ethnographer who focuses on lived Christianities in the United States. She is convinced that the field of Catholic Studies can learn much from the history and ethnography of Spanish-speaking U.S. Catholics, and that studies of U.S. Hispanics must be interwoven with the histories of U.S. Catholicism and Christianity. She discovered that her status as a non-Catholic was viewed as an asset by some of her interlocutors, who sensed that a sympathetic account of their experience told from a Catholic perspective might arouse suspicion in some readers. The author's methodological self-awareness serves to reaffirm not only that interdisciplinary scholarship is arduous and complex, but also that Catholic Studies attracts practitioners from a wide array of backgrounds driven by intellectual curiosity and the desire to share meaningful stories.

Keywords:   Catholics, Catholicism, Catholic Studies, Hispanics, interdisciplinary scholarship, ethnography, U.S.

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