Catalogue

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Visionaries [electronic resource] : the Spanish Republic and the reign of Christ /
William A. Christian, Jr.
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, c1996.
description
xxii, 544 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0520200403 (alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
More Details
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, c1996.
isbn
0520200403 (alk. paper)
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
8096424
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. [471]-502) and indexes.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
William A. Christian Jr., winner of a MacArthur Fellowship, has published widely on Spanish religion, including Moving Crucifixes in Modern Spain (1992).
Excerpts
Flap Copy
"William Christian shows clearsighted discernment about the workings of faith and the politics of the supernatural, but he never loses touch with the hunger and vulnerability of human beings in their quest for the sacred.Visionariesis an astonishing book of profound research and humane wisdom."--Marina Warner, author ofSix Myths of Our Time "A rich and wonderful book. . . . Beautifully written, leisurely in pace, complex not only in analytical categories but also in human sensitivity, this study of Catholic religiosity in the 1930s sheds light on fundamental aspects of human spirituality and psychology and on the sophisticated questions we all--scholars and ordinary readers alike--must ask about how society constructs, uses, and eclipses the wondrous. With wise methodological apercus and stunning human stories on every page, this is a book not so much to read as to savour--to dip into often and to meditate upon at length."--Caroline W. Bynum, author ofHoly Feast and Holy Fast
Flap Copy
"William Christian shows clearsighted discernment about the workings of faith and the politics of the supernatural, but he never loses touch with the hunger and vulnerability of human beings in their quest for the sacred. Visionariesis an astonishing book of profound research and humane wisdom."--Marina Warner, author of Six Myths of Our Time "A rich and wonderful book. . . . Beautifully written, leisurely in pace, complex not only in analytical categories but also in human sensitivity, this study of Catholic religiosity in the 1930s sheds light on fundamental aspects of human spirituality and psychology and on the sophisticated questions we all--scholars and ordinary readers alike--must ask about how society constructs, uses, and eclipses the wondrous. With wise methodological apercus and stunning human stories on every page, this is a book not so much to read as to savour--to dip into often and to meditate upon at length."--Caroline W. Bynum, author of Holy Feast and Holy Fast
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 1996-02-26:
In his extraordinary book, Christian (Person and God in a Spanish Valley, Moving Crucifixes in Modern Spain) documents the encounter between ecstatic religious experience and the Spanish Catholic clergy of the 1930s when, for common people of Spain, visions of the Virgin Mary at Ezkioga became an overarching phenomenon. The inevitable result was a challenge to the authority of the institutional Spanish church at a time when Spain itself was coming undone by fractured governments and, eventually, civil war. Were this merely a history of these visions and their consequences, the book would be remarkable enough; but Christian also skillfully explores the psychological states of the visionaries and shows how their unsanctioned spirituality attracted the often repressive wrath of Church authorities. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Appeared in Choice on 1996-11-01:
Christian provides a unique insight into the world of visionaries during Spain's Second Republic and critically dismisses previous interpretations of the Marian visions at Ezkioga, a rural township in Gipuzkoa. The author convincingly argues that the visions were not the product of conscious deceit, mental illness, or a clerical plot against social progress. Although it does not speak directly to the subject of Basque separatism, the book underscores a particular reaction to the Second Republic that drew strength from a network of seers, promoters, and a multitude of believers, and brought members of various social classes together. Christian attempts to recreate their world through oral history, diaries, letters, and other documentary sources while maintaining a respectful distance from judgment or interpretation of the visions that took place in 1931. However, he notes that historians have "underestimated the popular Catholic support for the military uprising of July 1936" while he demonstrates, ironically, the attempts of the orthodox religious hierarchy to suppress the short-lived visionary movement. Libraries supporting graduate programs in European history should purchase this book. S. H. Burkholder University of Missouri--St. Louis
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Kirkus Reviews, January 1996
Publishers Weekly, February 1996
Booklist, March 1996
Choice, November 1996
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Long Description
In June 1931, on a hillside in the Spanish Basque country, two children reported seeing the Virgin Mary. Within weeks, hundreds of seers were attracting tens of thousands of onlookers, and the nightly spectacle gave rise to others in dozens of towns across Spain. Visionaries explores the experience and the larger meaning of this wave. Immersing himself in the lives of the visionaries, William Christian retraced their steps and recreated their world. He spoke with hundreds of witnesses, who led him to caches of vision messages, diaries, clandestine publications, and eloquent photographs. He describes two kinds of visionaries and their relation to each other: the seers who had visions of Mary and the saints, and the believers who had a vision for the future, which they hoped Mary and the saints would confirm. Together, these visionaries attempted to convince a skeptical world that heavenly beings were appearing on the Iberian peninsula. By turns intense, poignant, fierce, and funny, this long-hidden history demonstrates the vital role of the extraordinary in giving voice to a society's hope and anguish.
Table of Contents
Visual Evidence and Mapsp. vii
Chronologyp. xi
Acknowledgmentsp. xvi
Prologuep. xx
Introductionp. 1
Events
Mary, the Republic, and the Basquesp. 13
Promoters and Seers I: Antonio Amundarain and Carmen Medinap. 41
Promoters and Seers II: The Catalansp. 66
Promoters and Seers III: Monsieur Rigne and Padre Burguerap. 108
Suppression by Church and Statep. 127
The Proliferation of Visionsp. 163
Patterns
Religious Professionalsp. 217
Kinds of Seers and Contact between Social Classesp. 243
The Vision Statesp. 262
Sacred Landscapesp. 302
Petitions from Believersp. 316
The Living and the Deadp. 326
The End of the Worldp. 347
Aftermathp. 373
Questions without Answersp. 392
Appendix
Printed questionnaire for seers, August 1931p. 403
Vision of Cruz Lete, 8 February 1932p. 405
Letter from Padre Burguera to seers, early 1933p. 406
Letter from Maria Maddalena Marcucci to Evarista Galdos, 20 March 1932p. 408
"Future Events," a letter to Juan Bautista Ayerbep. 408
Place-names that have changed since 1931p. 410
Notesp. 413
Bibliographyp. 471
Subject Indexp. 503
Index of Personsp. 531
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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