Our #HiddenCatholicCollection this week features the papers of Sister Marie Augusta Neal, SNDdeN (1921-2004), sociologist and Chair for the Sociology Department at Emmanuel College, Boston, MA. Sister Neal’s papers are 26.5 linear feet long and are housed in the East West Province Archives of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur in Ipswich, MA. The collection includes her personal papers, college and professional correspondence, background research for her Sisters’ Survey and other surveys conducted during her career, her papers for her work as an advisor for her congregation’s Chapters, her professional articles and library, recordings of her talks, as well as other miscellaneous papers. Download her finding aid here.
Sister Marie Augusta Neal graduated from Emmanuel College in 1942 with a degree in English and a minor in History. The following year, she joined the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. After teaching in South Boston and Lawrence, MA, she began her work toward her Master’s Degree in Sociology at Boston College, focusing her studies on the work of Pitirim A. Sorokin, an exile from Soviet Russia and the founder of the Sociology Department at Harvard University. After becoming a professor of Sociology at Emmanuel College, Sr. Marie Augusta began her work for her Ph.D. at Harvard University and received her Doctorate from Harvard in 1963. The focus of her dissertation was the religious attitudes towards change and social justice, a passion that became the focus of her mission for the rest of her life.
She was a speaker at many conferences, wrote numerous articles and was a contributing author to almost two dozen volumes. Sr. Marie Augusta Neal was also the author of nine books on sociology and women religious.
East West Province
Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur
30 Jeffreys Neck Rd.
Ipswich, MA 01938