The Wandering Heretics of Languedoc

Overview

How should historians read sources which record inquisitorial trials in the Middle Ages? How can we understand the fears felt by those on trial? By analysing six volumes of depositions in the trial of Cathar and Waldensian heretics in Languedoc between the late twelfth and the fourteenth century, in this book, Caterina Bruschi challenges old methodologies in the study of dissent. She examines the intrinsic narratological problems related to the sources and, using approaches from the social sciences, analyses the ...

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Overview

How should historians read sources which record inquisitorial trials in the Middle Ages? How can we understand the fears felt by those on trial? By analysing six volumes of depositions in the trial of Cathar and Waldensian heretics in Languedoc between the late twelfth and the fourteenth century, in this book, Caterina Bruschi challenges old methodologies in the study of dissent. She examines the intrinsic narratological problems related to the sources and, using approaches from the social sciences, analyses the different fears felt by deponents and how those fears affected their actions and decisions. In so doing, she sheds light on itinerancy within the ecclesial structure of non-conformist movements and contextualises the problem of itinerancy as a benchmark for the definition of heresy. Focusing on the lives and attitudes of trial witnesses, this innovative account is a major contribution to our understanding of the nature of religious non-conformity in the Middle Ages.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Caterina Bruschi undertakes the seemingly quixotic task of attempting to recover the voices of Cathar heretics from amidst the historical and literary constructions of inquisitorial registers...ultimately, this portrayal of Catharism as a living, mobile, and nonconformist church rings true in the echoes of the individual voices that Bruschi has heard in her texts." -Phillip Haberkern, H-German
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. Stories, and how to read them; 2. Catharism and its mobility; 3. Heretical itinerancy; 4. Patterns of fear and risk; Conclusions (and starting points); Bibliography.

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