Texts of the passion : Latin devotional literature and medieval society /
Thomas H. Bestul.
Philadelphia, Penn : University of Pennyslvania Press, 1996.
viii, 264 p.
081223376X (alk. paper)
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series title
Philadelphia, Penn : University of Pennyslvania Press, 1996.
081223376X (alk. paper)
general note
Includes index.
catalogue key
Bibliography: p. [239]-257.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1997-05:
Bestul (Univ. of Illinois, Chicago) examines a wide range of Latin prose meditations composed between 1100 and 1500. His methodology is balanced--literary-historicist, but aware of postmodern theoretical concerns--and his writing clear. Bestul's outline of the form's development includes the increasingly macabre emphasis on Christ's sufferings. Degradation of Jews as Christ killers mirrors the growth of a persecuting society in the High Middle Ages. Bestul may well be right about this, but links between Ekbert of Sch"onau, Bonaventure, John Pecham, and Ludolphus of Saxony and actual persecutions are often somewhat tenuous. Bestul also examines the figure of the Virgin Mary, arguing that her increasingly extravagant suffering and helpless grief in texts written by male authors (e.g., Quis dabit capiti) serve male interests and counter both the dangerous sexualization of Christ's body in women's passion narratives and the transgressive speech of female mystics. Bestul links the increasing violence of the passions to increasing use of judicial torture from the 13th century onward. He supplies a translation of Bernard's meditation on the "Lamentation of the Virgin" and a useful preliminary catalog of Latin Passion narratives. Upper-division undergraduates and above. D. Shanzer; Cornell University
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, May 1997
Reference & Research Book News, May 1997
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Table of Contents
Introduction: Methodology and Theoretical Orientationsp. 1
Medieval Narratives of the Passion of Christp. 26
The Representation of the Jews in Medieval Passion Narrativesp. 69
Gender and the Representation of Women in Medieval Passion Narrativesp. 111
The Passion of Christ and the Institution of Torturep. 145
Meditation by Bernard on the Lamentation of the Blessed Virgin (Meditacio Bernardi de lamentacione beate virginis)p. 165
Preliminary Catalogue of Medieval Passion Narrativesp. 186
Notesp. 193
Bibliographyp. 239
Indexp. 258
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

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