Diversity and the Common Good

Diversity and the Common Good : Civil Society, Religion, and Catholic Sisters in a Small City

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Diversity and the Common Good: Civil Society, Religion, and Catholic Sisters in a Small City examines the place of Catholic Sisters in shaping civil society in a small Midwestern city that has successfully confronted diversity. Pertinent in light of Sisters' historical work in creating a 'good society' (as well as recent criticisms and potential sanctions from the Vatican), this book appeals to scholars, students, and others seeking to learn about a city that "works" in the twenty-first century.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 176 pages
  • 152.4 x 231.14 x 20.32mm | 408.23g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739181521
  • 9780739181522

Review quote

In this book Karraker presents the results of a three years research that focused on a small Midwestern U. S. city. ... Her arguments are laid out very nicely and are very convincing. ... Diversity and the Common Good gives theoretical tools to understand how partnership between civil society and religion can indeed be a potent force in the pursuit of the common good... This book [is a welcome edition], and hope it will inspire many others. It is so timely! Catholic Books Review This book could not be more timely. In a well-grounded study of one Midwestern city, Meg Wilkes Karraker pulls Catholic sisters into the limelight and convincingly documents their immense contributions to the common good. The sisters at the heart of her study are inspiring, pragmatic, and exemplars of Christianity-in-practice as they embrace the Gospel mandate to care for the stranger. This is a well-written contribution to the literature that has long overlooked Catholic sisters-an unparalleled, faith-based workforce that has done so much for so many. -- Kathleen Mahoney, Past President Porticus North American Foundation This book weaves together several themes of great consequence in the United States right now and long into the future: immigration, diversity, and the value of religious involvement in civic issues, especially the role of Catholic sisters. Karraker masterfully combines serious sociological research and lively narrative as she tackles the impact of contentious social change in a small Midwestern city. She gains unique insight by spending extensive time in the community interviewing civic leaders, ordinary citizens, and the sisters. The results reveal the high esteem in which the whole town holds the sisters for the role they have had in reconciling diverse elements and widely differing viewpoints. Even as the author lauds the sisters, she laments their declining numbers and the failure of research to acknowledge their contributions in similar situations. The book will have wide appeal, not only to scholars, but to all who appreciate a dynamic account of the force for good that is possible when religious and civic leaders work together. -- Katarina Schuth, University of St. Thomasshow more

About Meg Wilkes Karraker

Meg Wilkes Karraker is professor of sociology and family business center fellow at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. She is author of Families with Futures: Family Studies into the Twenty-first Century (2012, coauthored with Janet Grochowski) and Global Families (2013) and editor of The Other People: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Migration (2014).show more

Table of contents

Dedication About the Author In Appreciation Prologue Chapter 1: Introduction: Approaching Bluffton by the Great River Road Chapter 2: Diversity Comes to the Heartland: "The Guts to Do Something About Racism" Chapter 3: Civil Society, Community Virtues Chapter 4: Catholic Values: The Sixty-Five Percent Solution? Chapter 5: Catholic Sisters: Hands, Hearts, and Spirit Chapter 6: From Social Networks to Spirited Capital: "Bluffton Loves Her Sisters!" Chapter 7: Conclusions: Diversity and the Common Good Epilogue Appendices Research Methodologies Tables and Figures References Indexshow more