Sanctuaries and Stigma: The Spiritual and Religious Lives of Women Transitioning from Prison

Team Members/Contributors

Jill L Snodgrass Loyola University Maryland Contact Me

About this project grant for researchers

Between 1980 and 2011, the number of women in prison in the U.S. increased by 587% (Carson & Sabol, 2012) with half of all incarcerated individuals serving fewer than three years (National Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2000). Women’s pathways to criminality often relate to their attempts to overcome the adversities of poverty and abuse. Yet in leaving prison, they are welcomed home by these same oppressions. This study aims to understand the lived experiences of women transitioning from prison to determine how their spiritual/religious beliefs contribute to their transition. In addition, this study explores how religious communities welcome and care for these women. This research will serve as the foundation for a book targeted to both scholars and religious practitioners.