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The Indian Mission of the Institute of Blessed Virgin Mary (IBVM) Nuns: Convents, Curriculum, and Indian Women

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This study focuses on the Indian mission of IBVM nuns, and the role played by them in the spread of female education in India. While acknowledging that missionaries were part of the imperial process, this study analyzes the work of Catholic nuns in India, their convents, and curriculum to show how their work advanced women’s educational opportunities in India. In the process the study examines how Catholic nuns resisted the dominating attitude of the Catholic Church in India. The last section of the article examines how Christian influence under missionaries not only prepared good mothers and wives but also trained Indian women to defy tradition and become economically independent. By evaluating both the contributions and the limitations of the work of IBVM nuns this article shows the complex nature of their work under colonial rule, their confrontations with the Christian patriarchs and efforts to fight for the rights of colonized women.


Authors share joint copyright with the JIWS. ©2022 Journal of International Women’s Studies.

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Journal of International Women's Studies