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Fresh Courage Take: New Directions by Mormon Women Hardcover – July 31, 2015
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“Fresh Courage Take serves up a nourishing dish from the hands of skilled Mormon women—a stew with good conservative meat, liberal spices, and a rich variety of experiences, choices, and insights from across the garden of this great sisterhood. Comfort food. With occasional bite. Thanks, Sisters!” —Carol Lynn Pearson, author of Beginnings and Beyond; Goodbye, I Love You; Mother Wove the Morning; and other bestsellers
“The state of grace proposed by these essays promises a more equitable, fair, and just world, safe for our daughters to live in, where women wear feminism as common ground and where men share the richness that results. I loved this collection of essays.” —Martha Bradley Evans, Associate Academic Vice President, University of Utah; author of Four Zinas: A Story of Mothers and Daughters on the Mormon Frontier
“It's critical for women to be able to share their stories and find empowerment, within their own lives and the lives of others, by relating personal experiences. There is power and strength in being able to connect with the lives of others, and that's why this book is so important. It is the work of lifting up other women through the amplification of one's own experiences.” —Lindsay Hansen Park, assistant director, Sunstone Education Foundation; host, Feminist Mormon Housewives podcast
“If you want to get a sense of where Mormon women are today, this collection of essays, Fresh Courage Take, might be a good place to start. Here you will find the voices of modern LDS women questioning not so much their religion as how to navigate their longings, desires, strengths, and dilemmas within the faith.” —Judith Freeman, author of The Chinchilla Farm and Red Water
From the Inside Flap
The age-old question of gender roles may not be solved within the pages of this book, but these twelve candid, almost lyrical confessions reveal some of the anxieties, sorrows, and joys of a diverse sample of Mormon women. Collectively, the twelve contributors demonstrate that a one-size-fits-all approach to womanhood leaves some women feeling like they do not fit.
A self-described "homespun quorum" of women, the writers span a range of views and situations from politically conservative to progressive, single to married, professional to unemployed, mothers with many children to those with none, European to African heritage, orthodox to heterodox. Drawing on their personal experiences, they confront the idea that only one path, that of marriage and motherhood, is deemed acceptable in Mormon cultural circles, a path that is not even possible for some women.
Readers are invited to imagine a sisterhood free from cultural norms that restrict rather than embolden. The biblical story of Eve, as Jamie Zvirzdin writes in her compelling introduction, is about taking a new direction, one that is difficult but ultimately rewarding. Likewise, amid the many competing ideologies that confront women today, the honest exploration of self and the expanded awareness of others that these essays offer will certainly yield fruitful dialogue and sweet understandings.
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