Religious Voices in Self-Narratives
In present-day pluralistic and individualized societies, the question of how individuals appropriate religious traditions has become particularly relevant. In this volume, psychologists, anthropologists, and historians examine the presence of religious voices in narrative constructions of the self. The focus is on the multiple ways religious stories and practices feature in self-narratives about major life transitions. The contributions explore the ways in which such voices inform the accommodation and interpretation of these transitions. In addition to being inspired by Dan McAdams’ approach to life stories as ‘personal myths’ that inform us about the quests of individuals for a satisfactory balance between agency and communion, most of the contributors have found the theory of ‘the dialogical self’ developed by Hubert Hermans particularly useful. Thus the contributions explore the ways in which identity formation is shaped by internal dialogues between personal and collective voices in the context of the specific constellations of power in which these voices are embedded. The volume is divided into three parts addressing theoretical and methodological considerations, religious resources in narratives on life transitions, and religious positioning in diaspora.