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  The Society of the Sacred Heart in 19th century France, 1800-1865

Our Price: €39.00
Authors: Phil Kilroy
Publication Year: Hardback May 2012
Pages: 260
Size: 234 x 156mm

ISBN: 9781859184998


In the wake of the Counter Reformation and more intensely after the French Revolution, religious communities of women sprang up with astonishing rapidity in France.  Today their form of life is coming to an end, at least in Europe, and it is the culmination of  more than three hundred years of religious life, which provided companionship for women and enabled them contribute effective social activity  in society. Such a phenomenon invites analysis,  both of  the origins and the motivations for such an upsurge of women’s communities.

The aim of this  book is to bring together aspects of the private and public life of  members of the Society of the Sacred Heart in 19th century France by using  the extensive community and personal archives of the Society, as well as  the  collection of 14,000 letters of Madeleine Sophie Barat.  By combining rigorous research and writing within the perspective of women’s history, the lives and achievements, the successes and failures, of these French women are shifted out of hagiography into history. This book is unique. It breaks with the tradition of religious hagiography so prevalent when writing the history of religious women in the Catholic Church.  It addresses the complexity of their personal/ community lives along with their public contribution to society.

Phil Kilroy lives in Dublin, and is the author of Madeleine Sophie Barat. A Life (Cork University Press, 2000)


Average Rating: 3 of 5 | Total Reviews: 1 Write a review »

  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
The Society of the Sacred Heart in Nineteenth-Cent August 28, 2013
Reviewer: Jennifer J. Popiel, from Saint Louis University, USA  
While each individual chapter is well-documented, the ultimate effect of the Society of the Sacred Heart was to leave this reader feeling a bit unfulfilled and wishing that the book had a stronger unifying framework.  The chapters do not always easily flow from one to the next and sometimes repeat significant details or quotations (for example, the same block quotation appears on pages 59-60 and page 152).  Most significantly, the source material, while useful and interesting, too frequently causes the narrative flow to fade away.  This is especially true when there are long sequences, like the educational plans of Marie d'Olivier, or the medical symptoms of Sophie Barat, that are inserted into the text without comment

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