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Synopsis: Nuns tells the fascinating stories of the women who have lived in religious communities during some of the most tumultuous years in European history. Drawing particularly on the nuns' own words, Silvia Evangelisti reveals their ideals and achievements, frustrations and failures, and their attempts to reach out to the society around them. She explores how they came to the cloister, how they responded to monastic discipline, and how they pursued their spiritual, intellectual, and missionary activities.
Life in the Middle Ages and the centuries that followed offered few options for high-born women. Your choice was, as one Italian noblewoman put it, "between a marriage and a wall." If your family could not afford a dowry, or you did not wish to marry, you could join a convent to escape the shame of being unwed. Some extremely pious women, so abhorring the idea of marriage, went as far as to throw themselves into boiling water so that their scarred bodies and faces would be unappealing to their prospective husbands. For many that joined, the convent was a chance to achieve some measure of a career, working as valued manuscript copiers or cultivating talents in the visual and musical arts. Despite strict rules which kept many orders separated from the outside world, nuns often found a way to contribute to their communities by creating charities and schools, while a few exceptional women made names for themselves for their artistic talents or for establishing new convents. This book features the individual stories of some of these outstanding historical figures, including Teresa of Avila, who set up over seventeen new convents, despite opposition from powerful politicians. When Europeans began to extend their interest in the New World, it was often the establishment of convents that provided the easiest transfer of European ideals and culture into the new colonies.
Despite the restrictions that were placed on the lives of nuns, Evangelisti clearly shows how these women were able to overcome some of the restrictions placed on women in their societies at large. In doing so, she provides a fascinating and rarely seen glimpse into their intriguing world.
About the Author:
Silvia Evangelisti is Lecturer in Early Modern History at the University of East Anglia. She has published widely on women and gender history in both English and Italian, looking especially at female religious life in the early modern period.
Title: Nuns: A History of Convent Life
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication Date: 2007
Book Condition: Used: Good
Book Description Oxford University Press, USA, 2007. Book Condition: Good. Ships from the UK. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Bookseller Inventory # GRP13949939
Book Description Feb 22, 2007. Book Condition: Used: Good. Ex-library book, usual markings. Hardback with dust cover. Clean text, sound binding. First non-text page removed by library. Quick dispatch from UK seller. Bookseller Inventory # M05_7011_LE_05/17
Book Description Oxford University Press, USA, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: Used: Good. Bookseller Inventory # SONG0192804359
Book Description Oxford University Press. Hardcover. Book Condition: GOOD. book was well loved but cared for. Possible ex-library copy with all the usual markings and stickers. Some light textual notes, highlighting and underling. Bookseller Inventory # 2782570089
Book Description Oxford Univ Pr on Demand, Cary, North Carolina, U.S.A., 2007. Hard Cover. Book Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Good. 301 pages. Size: 8vo - otver 7¾" - 9¾" Tall. Bookseller Inventory # 597603
Book Description Paperback. Book Condition: Fair. A readable copy of the book which may include some defects such as highlighting and notes. Cover and pages may be creased and show discolouration. Bookseller Inventory # GOR008488399
Book Description Oxford University Press, New York, NY, 2007. Cloth. Book Condition: Near Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine Dust Jacket. 301 pp. Tightly bound. Corners not bumped. Text is free of markings. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 010573
Book Description Hardcover. Book Condition: Good. Used book in GOOD condition. Good enough to read. Binding in GOOD shape with no missing pages. Cover has visible wear. Markings, writings and highligtings inside the book. Text ONLY. Does NOT include accessories such as CD, DVD, access code etc. Fast Shipping. Prompt Customer Service. Satisfaction guaranteed. Bookseller Inventory # 0192804359GOA
Book Description Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2007. Hardback. Book Condition: VG. Dust Jacket Condition: VG. Includes bibliographical references and index. 301pp. Bookseller Inventory # 42286
Book Description Oxford Univ. Press (2007), 2007. Very good in very lightly edgeworn, lightly rubbed jacket. First Printing Cloth. Bookseller Inventory # BOOKS037715