Abstract/Details

The experience of transformation in circles of women: Development of voice in a sacred setting


2006 2006

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Abstract (summary)

This study explored the possibility that participation in a women's circle that holds a sacred center can serve as a useful process in creating transformational change. Twelve coresearchers, 2 African American, 2 multiracial, and 8 Caucasian women, aged 45 to 61, who had been part of a women's circle for 3 1/2 years or more, participated in individual, 1 to 1 ½ hour, in-person, and in-depth interviews during which they answered questions designed to promote a full description of their stories of participation in a women's circle. A qualitative research method was utilized combining the organic inquiry approach and feminist research methods. A narrative was written for each of the coresearchers to illustrate her experiences of growth and transformation. Numerous themes emerged from analysis of the data including increased feelings of connection; reports of taking circle practices into relationship, work, and community settings; increased appreciation for diversity; increased emotional awareness and healing; feelings of empowerment; increased ability to handle conflict; increased confidence and authenticity; increased communication and listening skills; increased spirituality and association with the Feminine Sacred; and increased vitality and creativity. In response to 3 additional questions, the coresearchers affirmed and validated their experiences of transformation that occurred as a result of participation in this research. The responses of 4 early readers served as a measure of validation of the findings. The findings of this study supported the premises put forth by the relational-cultural theory that the development of self occurs best in relationships that support increasing capacity for mutually supportive interdependence and competence in relationships, with other properties of self, such as assertiveness and creativity, developing within the underlying context of interrelatedness. This study illustrates the growth and development that are possible through participation in women's circles that hold a sacred center.*

*This dissertation is a compound document (contains both a paper copy and a CD as part of the dissertation). The CD requires the following system requirements: Adobe Acrobat.

Indexing (details)


Subject
Social psychology;
Womens studies;
Religion
Classification
0451: Social psychology
0453: Womens studies
0318: Religion
Identifier / keyword
Philosophy, religion and theology; Social sciences; Psychology; Empowerment; Sacred; Voice; Women
Title
The experience of transformation in circles of women: Development of voice in a sacred setting
Author
Beaird, Gloria Jean
Number of pages
357
Publication year
2006
Degree date
2006
School code
0669
Source
DAI-B 67/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
ISBN
9780542714320
Advisor
Lazarus, Irene
University/institution
Institute of Transpersonal Psychology
University location
United States -- California
Degree
Ph.D.
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Language
English
Document type
Dissertation/Thesis
Dissertation/thesis number
3221758
ProQuest document ID
304945057
Copyright
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
http://search.proquest.com/docview/304945057
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