Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Theology



First Advisor

William C. McDonough


How is music described in the burgeoning spirituality of Etty Hillesum in her journals and correspondence from 1941 through 1943? I discuss the influence of music in her life, the number of references to musical terminology in the literature, and the undercurrent of music in her spirituality. This area of Hillesum’s writings has not been critically studied as of this project date. Explored are: the role music played in Hillesum’s social sphere, music as metaphor for Hillesum’s spirituality in her journals and correspondence, and the connection between music and spirituality, in general, and more specifically as it appears in her writings. Hillesum’s spirituality started as a personal quest to understand and describe her inner journey. As an aspiring writer, she used many metaphors for her journey. Music is one of those metaphors.