Undergraduate Research & Scholarships

Hanna Cox L&S Social Sciences

Selfhood and Healing: Cistercian Women Monastics

How might one experience selfhood within a Benedictine, Trappist monastic tradition? How might a cloistered religious life cultivate subjectivity? What constitutes healing within Catholic ontologies, and how might monasticism bear on processes of healing? How might experiences of selfhood and of healing interplay? How might one engage their experience with theology? I am so fortunate and grateful to be able to immerse myself in a community of Cistercian women monastics during the course of my research. While these questions follow anthropological considerations of religion as it intersects with subjectivity and ontology, “in the field,” I intend to wholeheartedly engage with monastic life and the people from whom I am learning not solely from the vantage of an anthropologist. The nature of this research is deeply intersubjective and is relevant both to the anthropology of religion and to myself personally. Finally, this research considers the place of monasticism within secularity and discourses of the post-secular by way of subjectivity.

Message To Sponsor

Thank you for the opportunity to pursue independent research. These questions are very alive for me and I am thrilled to be able to learn so directly and to engage thoroughly with anthropological and religious studies literature. It is wonderful that undergraduate research is valued. And to my professor Aarthi Sethi, thank you for your support.
Major: Anthropology
Mentor: Aarthi Sethi
Sponsor: Wishek Fund
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