Publication Date

April 2017

Advisor(s)

Hirsh Sawhney

Major

English

Language

English (United States)

Abstract

Upon her mother's abandonment at age fourteen, Helena Little is forced into the custody of her cousins, who are devout Pentecostals living in rural southern Kentucky in the early 2000s. While adjusting to a new life without many modern conveniences, and with strict gendered rules for personal dress and mannerisms, at seventeen she becomes engaged and married to Ben Burns, son of Taffeta and Edward, pillars of the church's community. When she learns of her pregnancy, Lennie must reckon with her conceptions of motherhood, marriage, and belonging in a community that has secluded itself for decades in the heart of America.

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