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A ghost at church: A narrative inquiry into how single LDS (Mormon) women make meaning of their sexuality

Resource type
Thesis type
(Thesis) M.A.
Date created
There is very limited research exploring the experiences of single LDS (Mormon) women and sexuality. This study used a narrative approach to explore how ten single LDS women make meaning of their sexuality within a context that forbids premarital sexual activity. Four main constraints emerged from participants’ stories. As women, they face limits on institutional authority and pressure to put their personal needs second. As single individuals, they are susceptible to stigma and have no legitimized outlet in which to discuss or express sexuality. These significant constraints were most evident in bishop’s interviews. Experiences there impacted how women viewed themselves and formed their identities, including their sexual identities. Challenges include arbitrary penalties and experiences of judgment and shame. Some women act agentically within these institutional constraints as they choose how to interpret rules, define their own relationships with their sexuality and negotiate changing perceptions of the institution and of God.
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Copyright is held by the author.
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes.
Scholarly level
Supervisor or Senior Supervisor
Thesis advisor: Jordan, Sharalyn
Thesis advisor: Sensoy, Özlem
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