Dopesick

Dopesick

by

Beth Macy

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Dopesick can help.

Sister Beth Davies Character Analysis

Sister Beth Davies is a Catholic nun and activist who works closely with Dr. Art Van Zee, Sue Ella Kobak, and Sue Cantrell in her activism against opioid addiction in the impoverished Lee County region of Virginia. She is originally from Staten Island, and before becoming a crusader against OxyContin, she had a history of activism on behalf of coal miners. Though she may seem unassuming at only five feet tall, Sister Beth is known for her fierce determination. At one point, when Purdue Pharma offers $100,000 to local communities to deal with the effects of opioids, Sister Beth is the sole dissenter who believes they should avoid taking “blood money.” Eventually, she is able to convince the other Lee County activists to see things her way, and they ultimately reject the money. Sister Beth is also one of the first to realize that for recovering addicts, MAT is more effective than twelve-step programs alone. Though Sister Beth is not a traditional medical expert, she is knowledgeable and passionate, showing what persistent outsiders can accomplish in the face of pharmaceutical companies with much more money and resources.
Get the entire Dopesick LitChart as a printable PDF.
Dopesick PDF

Sister Beth Davies Character Timeline in Dopesick

The timeline below shows where the character Sister Beth Davies appears in Dopesick. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Fighting the Medical Establishment Theme Icon
...the country doctor Art Van Zee and his colleague, the Catholic nun and drug counselor Sister Beth Davies . Despite being outsiders, they are both experts at what they do. (full context)
Chapter 2
Poverty as an Obstacle to Recovery  Theme Icon
Fighting the Medical Establishment Theme Icon
...Zee and Sue Ella—are initially leaning toward accepting the money. But a five-foot-tall nun named Sister Beth is adamantly opposed to the idea. (full context)
Fighting the Medical Establishment Theme Icon
Sister Beth is a Staten Island native with a masters from Columbia. She has a history of... (full context)
Chapter 3
Fighting the Medical Establishment Theme Icon
...from similar areas of Philadelphia. The two of them eventually align with Van Zee and Sister Beth after they read Barry Meier’s 2003 book Pain Killer. Nuss and Bisch launch a grassroots... (full context)
Chapter 4
Fighting the Medical Establishment Theme Icon
Van Zee can’t make the sentencing, but he sends detailed notes to Sister Beth . Van Rooyan will also be there, as will Ed Bisch and Lee Nuss. They... (full context)
Chapter 13
Poverty as an Obstacle to Recovery  Theme Icon
Fighting the Medical Establishment Theme Icon
The Value of Science Theme Icon
Sister Beth and Art Van Zee find that in the Appalachian Bible Belt, it helps to blend... (full context)