Exploring Horizons of The Self Through The Journeys of Women of Color
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Saturday, October 13• 5:00 ~ 7:00 pm
Location: Unity of Charleston, 2535 Leeds Ave, Charleston, SC 29405
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Dr. Catherine Meeks returns as our guide bringing with her two important heroines of modern American literature: “Celie”, of Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel, The Color Purple, and “Janie”, from Zora Neal Hurston’s seminal masterpiece, Their Eyes Were Watching God.
Dr. Catherine Meeks will explore the individuation process of these characters and their personal qualities: their perseverance, power, sanity, and sense of community. The stories of Celie and Janie, and the real-life women who have inspired these allegorical characters, are agents of change. They defy all odds as they bring a new and meaningful archetype for our age into focus: the modern woman of color, the underdog. She is the heroine who uses courage, kindness and her community, as she “just tries to save her life.”
Catherine Meeks, Ph.D is the retired Clara Carter Acree Distinguished Professor of Socio Cultural Studies from Wesleyan College and Founding Executive Director of the Lane Center for Community Engagement and Service. She holds a Masters Degree in Social Work from Clark Atlanta University and Ph.D from Emory University. She has had many great teachers including her sons, the Bible, Jungian Psychology, cross cultural stories and other books of wisdom. She is the author of five books and one inspirational CD.
The core of her work has been with people who have been marginalized because of economic status, race, gender or physical ability as they pursue liberation, justice and access to resources that can help lead them to health, wellness and a more abundant life. This work grows out of her realization that all of humanity is one family which God desires to unite.
Ms. Meeks curently organizes spiritual retreats and workshops on a variety of wellness and spirituality issues. She teaches courses on Jungian Psychology, racial diversity, cultural issues and spiritual development. She is a member of the National Council of Elders, the Inter Faith Children’s Movement Board, Jubilee Partners ( A refugee resettlement center) and the Society of St. Anna the Prophet.
Refreshments and Continuing Education Credit included. We look forward to seeing you there!
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More About this Lecture:
As the stories unfold, Celie and Janie make their miraculous odysseys, from desolation to invention to self-actualization. Theirs mirror the real-life experiences of African-American Women, women of color, and others, who face seemingly insurmountable circumstances. Although these novels are set in another time, many women today and most women of color are still “trying to save their lives.” The work of this particular type of journey – of getting up each day, taking one step after another, toward a horizon barely discernible, and perhaps known only to the soul itself – is what Carl Jung would call the Hero’s Journey.
How do they do it? What propels those totake the path on the road to individuation, although they may never have heard of the concept? From where does their tenacity arise? Are they courageous or crazy? How can they teach others by their presence? What inspired these writers to create such important characters who have given us new models and new inspirations to live life, even in the darkest of times?
History – “herstory” has imposed unrelenting and often impossible challenges to African-American Women, and women of color. For many, this truth is hard to comprehend. Yet, through these authors, we can get a sense of the reality they face. These African American heroines forge their own sense of person-hood into being, despite the blatantly destructive cultural, social and economic obstructions put before them.