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Robert of Arbrissel : Sex, Sin, And Salvation in the Middle Ages (Paperback)

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Product Overview

This Book Tells The Fascinating story of Robert of Arbrissel (ca. 1045-1116). Robert was a parish priest, longtime student, reformer, hermit, wandering preacher, and, most famously, founder of the abbey of Fontevraud. There men and women joined together in a monastic life organized so that women ruled men and men served women, according to the founder's plan. As Jacques Dalarun shows in this biography, however, Fontevraud was for Robert only one stopping point in a restless and lifelong journey in search of salvation that took place in roads, forests, towns, and monasteries across France. Hard as the travel was, the spiritual search was more agonizing still. Consumed with a sense of his own sinfulness, sexual and otherwise, Robert lived out penance however he could. The many women who gathered in his wake became partners in his religious quest, and his frequent contact with them was, paradoxically, a centerpiece of his penitential regime. At Fontevraud, he encouraged others to adopt the practice of intense contact with and indeed subservience to women. This reversal of the standard gender hierarchy in the midst of the ongoing battle with sexual temptation has baffled and even enraged observers during Robert's lifetime and ever since. Vividly narrating the course of Robert's life and his relationships with others along the way, the author hews closely to medieval sources, in particular two letters to Robert critical of his nonconformity and his relations with women, along with two admiring accounts written within a few years of his death. This translation by Bruce L. Venarde preserves the novelistic character of the original while updating and augmenting it with full notes, abibliography, and an introduction both to the book and to scholarly interpretations of Robert in the past two decades. A new preface by Jacques Dalarun completes the reworking of the first full-length biography of Robert of Arbrissel available in English.


Publisher Catholic Univ of Amer Pr
Mfg Part# 9780813214399
SKU 202452720
Format Paperback
ISBN10 0813214394
Release Date 8/13/2012
Product Attributes
Book Format Paperback
Number of Pages 0188
Publisher Catholic University of America Press
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