Lay Catholic spirituality in Australia : Adelaide and Perth, 1922-1962

Katharine Therese Massam

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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    [Truncated] Catholic men and women in Australia have expressed their relationship with God, the institution of Catholicism and wider society in a variety of ways. This thesis directs attention to the spirituality of ordinary Catholic Australians between 1922 and 1962, and argues that the Catholic approach to God was characterised on the one hand by a passive and highly emotive piety centred on personal holiness for the next world and, on the other hand, by an active apostolic spirit which called for an analytical understanding of this world in order that it might be transformed. These two strands of passive and active spirituality, which can be conveniently labelled 'feminine', or 'expressive', and 'masculine', or 'instrumental', aspects of Catholicism, are found pulling against each other as well as being woven together. One way or another the priorities and concerns of each or both threaded through the choices which ordinary people made about the way they expressed their faith. The two contrasting strands formed the basis of a complex web of relationship between ordinary Catholic people and their God which had profound implications for the history of Catholicism and wider society in Australia.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • The University of Western Australia
    Publication statusUnpublished - 1992

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    • This thesis has been made available in the UWA Profiles and Research Repository as part of a UWA Library project to digitise and make available theses completed before 2003. If you are the author of this thesis and would like it removed from the UWA Profiles and Research Repository, please contact


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