Girls and Catholic Education
The focus of this chapter is on how three generations of Catholic mothers and daughters think back on their Catholic education. Insights are gleaned into the expectations that mothers have of Catholic education for their daughters, how mothers and daughters understand their experiences of schooling, and in what way dis/connections between the values espoused at school and in the home shape women’s lives and interpersonal relationships. Case histories of five family groups are analysed according to their perceptions of shifting values, morals and ethics in education between the 1920s and early twenty-first century. What is shared across these family groupings is that all three generations were educated at Catholic schools. Social, religious and historical demarcation lines are re/drawn within, and between, the various educational journeys these women experienced. It is argued that relationships with religion are not fixed, rather these women continue to make choices in relation to the spiritual ideals, principles and ethics derived from their Catholic education.
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