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Handling Sin Confession in the Middle Ages

ISBN 0952973413 / 9780952973416 / 0-9529734-1-3

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Book summary

Penance, confession and their texts (penitential and confessors' manuals) are important topics for an understanding of the middle ages, in relation to a wide range of issues, from medieval social thought to Chaucer's background. These essays treat a variety of different aspects of the topic: subjects include the frequency and character of early medieval penance; the summae and manuals for confessors, and the ways in which these texts (written by males for males) constructed women as sexual in nature; William of Auvergne's remarkable writing on penance; and the relevance of confessors' manuals for demographic history. JOHN BALDWIN's major study `From the Ordeal to Confession', delivered as a Quodlibet lecture, traces the appearance in French romances of the themes of a penitent's contrition, the priest's job in listening, and the application of the spiritual conseil and penitence. [via]