The Sisters 2: Building Knowledge for Justice


My interview with Sister Marie Augusta Neal took place in 1998 on a rainy afternoon in a quiet kitchen in Lowell, Massachusetts.  Her spirit and what she achieved lit the room brightly.  I have interviewed many extraordinary people over the years and been e by their stories.  Sr. Marie Augusta Neal is certainly at or near the top.

One story she told me that was not included in the final publication was about her invitation to South Africa after she published the Sisters Survey described below.  The white Sisters there – all white at the time – were caught between the apartheid system (1948 to 1994) ‘ in which they worked and their own sense of justice.  They walked out of the white schools where they had taught for generations and opened new schools in the black neighborhoods.  Often that also meant walking away from their families. It was an important step to end apartheid.

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