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Finding Eden: How Black Women Use Spirituality to Navigate Academia
Shahid, Kyra T.

2014, Doctor of Philosophy, Miami University, Educational Leadership.
This narrative inquiry examines the role of spirituality in the professional practices of African American women in academia. Specifically, I conceptualize the tensions between intellectualism and spirituality as African American female faculty working in predominately-White universities negotiate them. Although there has been an increase in scholarship concerning spirituality and education in recent years, rarely have scholars looked at the ways in which African American faculty might use spirituality to address epistemic violence in the academy. The topic brings to bear a worthy discussion of the historical relationship between spirituality and intellectualism in the lives of African Americans as well as the intellectual warfare waged upon Black epistemologies in American educational institutions. African American women in particular, face a perpetuation of negative racial constructions through curricular, pedagogical, and administrative practices that has led many to believe that they had to choose between culture and intellectualism (Crane, 1994; Burrell, 2010). The narratives of the women in this study provide insights on how certain women navigate such choices.
The purpose of this study is to explore how African American women faculty use spirituality to negotiate their relationship to knowledge in ways that transcend the negative effects of racism. The research question that guides this study is how do African American women use spirituality to navigate academia? This study is significant because it examines and analyzes a form of resistance that is important to educational struggles about what constitutes knowledge and how particular knowledge is used in oppressive ways. The narratives of these scholars substantiate the importance of spirituality in the lives of women and provide insights on how African American spirituality affects the intellectual strivings of Black women educators.

Denise Taliaferro Baszile (Committee Chair)
Dennis Carlson (Committee Member)
Sally Lloyd (Committee Member)
Paula Saine (Committee Member)
131 p.

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Shahid, K. (2014). Finding Eden: How Black Women Use Spirituality to Navigate Academia. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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Shahid, Kyra. "Finding Eden: How Black Women Use Spirituality to Navigate Academia." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Miami University, 2014. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 15 Dec 2017.

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Shahid, Kyra "Finding Eden: How Black Women Use Spirituality to Navigate Academia." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Miami University, 2014. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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