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Social Work


This article is based on a larger research study that focused on how an adolescent girl’s identity development is influenced by the death of a parent. A sample of 18 women was recruited for the study. This article highlights the transformation of these women’s spiritual and religious beliefs as part of their identity development following the death of their parents. The different pathways the women took with respect to their views on religion and spirituality are exemplified in what follows, highlighting themes of struggle and connection.


This article was originally published in Omega: Journal of Death and Dying, 49(2): 163-181. (c) 2004 Baywood Publishing Company, Inc. Systematic or multiple reproduction or distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.