This title is the winner of the Adele Mellen Prize for Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship. The works that Sor Ines de la Cruz (1648/51 - 1695) wrote specifically for the church have largely been neglected until now. This book on the devotional exercises of one of Mexico's most highly acclaimed writers provides a passageway into the relatively unexplored religious area of her life and adds another layer of understanding to the rest of her writings. Relatively untouched by critical review, the ejercicios/exercises were thought to have little, if any, literary value in comparison with her more canonized output. However, this insightful study and annotated bilingual translation gives this prominent writer the attention she deserves as an author of religious and devotional texts. The author examines the thematic, rhetorical, historical and scientific elements of late seventeenth-century colonial Mexico and their impact on the ejercicios/exercises. He also highlights how the ejercicios/exercises function as a theologically sound Church document that offers meditations and exercises on humility, obedience, the Incarnation and the Immaculate Conception. As part of this process, he signals how Sor Juana's religious discourse provides important continuity with her secular production. The publication of this annotated bilingual edition offers Sor Juana's English-speaking audience the opportunity to experience her prowess as author of devotional literature.
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Professor Grady C. Wray received his Ph.D. from Indiana University and is a member of the faculty at the University of Oklahoma.
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