Anabaptist Community Members' Perceptions and Preferences Related to Healthcare Garrett-Wright, Dawn; Main, Maria Eve; Jones, M. Susan pp. 187-200
Full Text PDF
Writing Life, Writing Back, and Writing Through: Saloma Miller Furlong's Why I Left the Amish: A Memoir and Bonnet Strings: An Amish Woman's Ties to Two Worlds Voelz, Sabrina pp. 201-219
Full Text PDF
(Ohio State University. Libraries, 2016) Werner, Hans
By the early twenty-first century, Old Colony Mennonites constituted a diaspora across the Americas. They maintained distinctive conservative dress and selectively rejected aspects of modern technology. While the label "Old Colony" became current in Manitoba in the 1870s, their conserving orientation reaches back to church divisions in The Netherlands in the sixteenth century. After a sojourn in West Prussia, they migrated to Russia in the eighteenth century and then to the prairies of Manitoba in the 1870s. The rapid industrialization of Russia and Canada sharpened their Anabaptist sense of being separate from the world and stimulated a reaction to particular innovations: new ways of singing, progressive education, pietism, and market agriculture. By 1890, the lines were drawn and, with a re-registration of church members, the Old Colony Church was a reality. World War I aggravated the conserver-oriented Old Colony Mennonites, stimulating a migration to Mexico—and a culture of migration—to avoid contact with the modern world.
(Ohio State University. Libraries, 2016) Roessingh, Carel; Bovenberg, Daniëlle
Within the Old Colony Mennonite settlements of Belize, the relationship between religious and economic practices entails a constant navigation of the acceptable, where threats of worldliness come from technology and from contact with outsiders. This paper takes as its focus the business of a butcher in Shipyard settlement, whose daily work testifies to a navigation of both of these potential threats. This entrepreneur uses technologies of energy, transportation, and communication—operated in part by an outside worker—to extend the radius of his meat business. The tense environment of Shipyard’s religious diversity frames our discussion of these observations, leading us to reconsider our understanding of the Ordnung and its relation to business activity. To understand the entrepreneur’s skillful navigation of rules and opportunities, we use the term "social capital" (Bourdieu 1986; Portes 2010) to reflect on the paradoxical relationship between religious rules and entrepreneurial space—and to consider how the Ordnung can be seen as a spacious (rather than a constrictive) place for Mennonite entrepreneurs
(Ohio State University. Libraries, 2016) Hedberg, Anna Sofia
Boundaries keep people apart just as they keep people together. Boundaries are social constructs made by man in order to maintain the natural order of things. The aim of this article is to elaborate on the social construct of boundaries and particularly acknowledge their dynamic character. Social and cultural boundaries are passable, changeable, and negotiable. Nonetheless, boundaries are fundamental to many peoples' existence and survival as ethnic and cultural communities and must therefore be acknowledged as essential human needs. By focusing on the members of a conservative Christian community—Old Colony Mennonites in Bolivia—as they carry out practices in relation to the outside world, the article illustrates processes that help sustain the group's boundaries towards the outside as well as processes that simultaneously challenge and to some extent transform these same boundaries.
(Ohio State University. Libraries, 2016) Crocker, Wendy
This paper narrates the schooling experiences of the Old Colony Mennonites (OCM) across two contexts based on my first-hand observations as a principal in a rural, southwestern Ontario school and on a research trip to the Cuauhtémoc, Chihuahua State, Mexico. The OCM children described in this paper attend public school in southwestern Ontario and travel regularly to Mexico where many of the families hold property or visit family. Thus, during one calendar year, these OCM children often attend schools in two countries with differences in the use of language(s) and literacy practices, expectations in the classroom, and even the meaning of playing outside. This reality, which requires OCM students to adapt to the expectations of two very different learning cultures, is an important facet in the life of these children, whose experiences of school and education are vastly different. Using ethnographic methods and case study tools including photos, I describe the educational settings of Ontario and Chihuahua where OCM students are schooled. Further, I illustrate how the diaspora from Russia to Manitoba, Canada; the subsequent migration to Mexico; and then the return of the OCM to Canada (this time Ontario) was partially predicated on the need to find places where their beliefs about education could be enacted, a search that continues to the present.
(Ohio State University. Libraries, 2016) Schlabach, Gracia
While working in Manitoba Colony, Mexico, as a teacher under Old Colony Mennonite Support from 2009 to 2014, I gathered data about the community from conversations and periodicals such as Kurze Nachrichten aus Mexico, Deutsch-Mexikanische Rundshau, Das Blatt, and Die Mennonitische Post. This information shows both changing demographics and positive change that stems from improved literacy.
(Ohio State University. Libraries, 2016) Garrett-Wright, Dawn; Main, Maria Eve; Jones, M. Susan
The plain Anabaptists are thought to differ from mainstream U.S. health care beliefs and practices. Many non-Anabaptist health care providers have limited knowledge of the specific health beliefs and preferences of Anabaptists, which can lead to misunderstandings. The purpose of this descriptive qualitative study was to collect information from Anabaptist community members related to health care beliefs and preferences in their communities. Participants, who were members of various plain Anabaptist communities, completed a questionnaire containing open-ended questions about health issues. Seven themes emerged in results: (1) health viewed as a gift from God that provides the ability to work; (2) concern about exposure to chemicals and food additives as health risks; (3) the use of a variety of resources from lay members in the community in addition to seeking information from professionals; (4) the desire to use natural remedies first with outside care being sought when deemed necessary; (5) barriers to seeking professional healthcare as mainly related to cost, time, and provider attitudes; (6) maintaining a good diet, being active, and having good dental care as important preventative activities; and (7) expectation of respect, engagement, and care from providers.
(Ohio State University. Libraries, 2016) Voelz, Sabrina
In recent years, the memoir boom has left publishers searching far and wide for new material. As part of this trend and the immense demand for anything Amish, non-professional writers have seized the opportunity to make their voices heard. While there is a wealth of scholarship on the Amish, the often trauma-filled narratives of the ex-Amish have neither been widely accessible to the public, nor the subject of much academic scrutiny until recently. This article explores the memoir, its genre conventions, and current debates. Furlong’s debut memoir, Why I Left the Amish (2011), is a powerful narrative about a desperate struggle for self-determination. She breaks the silence on mental illness as well as physical and sexual abuse among the Amish while also providing readers with cultural information and alternative perspectives on Amish traditions and values. At the same time, Why I Left the Amish raises a few ethical concerns. In the second installment to her serial memoirs, Furlong explores the challenges of beginning a new life in an unfamiliar environment and coming to terms with her trauma-filled past. Bonnet Strings: An Amish Woman’s Ties to Two Worlds (2014) is a more polished memoir, in which Furlong critically reflects on her first memoir, narrates her struggle to build interpersonal relationships, as well as continues to forge her own intersectional identities.