The girls who spoke for God: vocation and discernment in seventeenth-century France

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dc.contributor.author Kort, Meghan
dc.date.accessioned 2016-08-30T19:49:34Z
dc.date.copyright 2016 en_US
dc.date.issued 2016-08-30
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1828/7500
dc.description.abstract During the seventeenth century, the Catholic Reformation sparked unprecedented growth in girls' educational opportunities with the opening of over five hundred new teaching convents. Yet, the active role girls played in these institutional and social changes is often overlooked. Even though girls' autobiographical writing from the seventeenth century is rare, prescriptive, educational, and biographical sources from convent schools are rich in details about girls' lives and vocational discernment. Upon leaving school, girls were encouraged to take either marriage or religious vows. Since orthodox Catholicism taught that salvation could only be received if one's life reflected God's will this decision was weighty. In fact, reformed convents tested their entrants to ensure that their vocations were freely chosen and not forced. Seventeenth-century girls' educational theorists shared this concern, and while they debated the details of curriculum, they agreed that only girls had the authority to articulate their own God-given vocations. At convent schools, girls encountered both models of female domesticity and women who were dedicated to religious life. The repeated affirmation of both of these paths created an atmosphere in which girls could legitimately choose either. Furthermore, the memories of vocational discernment recorded in nuns' lives offer evidence of plausible ways in which girls proved their callings to their communities. Focusing on religious vocation reveals how girls in the seventeenth century actively articulated their ideas, impacted their societies, and challenged adult authority. en_US
dc.language English eng
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.rights Available to the World Wide Web en_US
dc.subject seventeenth-century France en_US
dc.subject convent en_US
dc.subject girls' education en_US
dc.subject Jacqueline Pascal en_US
dc.subject Saint-Cyr en_US
dc.subject Port-Royal en_US
dc.subject religious vocation en_US
dc.subject history of girlhood en_US
dc.subject Angelique Arnaud en_US
dc.subject Catholic Reformation en_US
dc.subject hagiography en_US
dc.subject nuns' Lives en_US
dc.subject church history en_US
dc.subject Racine's Esther en_US
dc.subject lettres circulaires en_US
dc.title The girls who spoke for God: vocation and discernment in seventeenth-century France en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.contributor.supervisor Beam, Sara
dc.degree.department Department of History en_US
dc.degree.level Master of Arts M.A. en_US
dc.description.scholarlevel Graduate en_US
dc.description.embargo 2017-08-25
dc.description.proquestcode 0330 en_US
dc.description.proquestcode 0335 en_US
dc.description.proquestcode 0520 en_US

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