Nuns Without Cloister: Sisters of St. Joseph in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries (Paperback)
  • Nuns Without Cloister: Sisters of St. Joseph in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries (Paperback)
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Nuns Without Cloister: Sisters of St. Joseph in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries (Paperback)

(author), (translator), (translator)
£42.95
Paperback 460 Pages / Published: 12/04/2010
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Nuns Without Cloister explores one of the first and most innovative among the non-cloistered women's congregations established after the Council of Trent. Under the aegis of a Jesuit missionary, the first Sisters of St. Joseph envisioned a direct role for religious women in the secular society of mid-seventeenth century France and quietly broke the ecclesiastical and cultural barriers that opposed it. This book opens perspectives on the sisters' success through a politics of discretion and the introduction of creative variety in their lives in country parishes or in the urban orphanages, hospitals, and reformatories for fallen women of the ancien regime. Vacher's methodology, comparing the congregation's theoretical, prescriptive documents with evidence about the actual life of these communities in southern France, leads to the question of whether and to what degree succeeding generations grasped the original inspiration. Sisters of St. Joseph preceding the French Revolution established a paradigm for the active, apostolic women's congregations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries that supplied the workforce behind Catholic schools, colleges, hospitals, and orphanages in the United States, Canada, and elsewhere. In researching them, Nuns Without Cloister addresses a little understood but central dimension in the early modern foundations of contemporary Catholicism.

Publisher: University Press of America
ISBN: 9780761843429
Number of pages: 460
Weight: 708 g
Dimensions: 236 x 156 x 28 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
A beautifully smooth and professional translation of a compelling and indispensable landmark text in the history of social provision in France. It is the story of how in the mid-seventeenth century six largely uneducated village women of modest means were brought together by a concerned Jesuit to form an association recognized and promoted by the local bishop and directed to village services such as recycling clothing and blankets, feeding and sheltering orphans or children whose parents were disabled, and teaching survival skills like lace making. It was to be the acorn that produced the oak, the genesis of a significant worldwide movement, the Sisters of St. Joseph. -- Olwen Hufton, Merton College, Oxford
Byrne's translation provides us with Vacher's technical research and analyses, yet maintains a clear and concise narrative. Nuns Without Cloister includes extensive use of footnotes; at the end are supporting documents, charts, glossary, index and bibliography. Nuns Without Cloister will be of interest to graduate students and researchers interested in history of women's congregations, women's spirituality and history as well as Catholic studies. * Magistra *

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