Cathars in Question
Title Details

341 Pages

23.4 x 15.6 cm

Series: Heresy and Inquisition in the Middle Ages

Imprint: York Medieval Press

Cathars in Question

Edited by Antonio Sennis

  • Description
  • Reviews
The question of the reality of Cathars and other heresies is debated in this provocative collection.
Cathars have long been regarded as posing the most organised challenge to orthodox Catholicism in the medieval West, even as a "counter-Church" to orthodoxy in southern France and northern Italy. Their beliefs, understood to be inspired by Balkan dualism, are often seen as the most radical among medieval heresies. However, recent work has fiercely challenged this paradigm, arguing instead that "Catharism" is a construct, mis-named and mis-represented by generations of scholars, and its supposedly radical views were a fantastical projection of the fears of orthodox commentators.
This volume brings together a wide range of views from some of the most distinguished internationalscholars in the field, in order to address the debate directly while also opening up new areas for research. Focussing on dualism and anti-materialist beliefs in southern France, Italy and the Balkans, it considers a number of crucial issues. These include: what constitutes popular belief; how (and to what extent) societies of the past were based on the persecution of dissidents; and whether heresy can be seen as an invention of orthodoxy. At the same time, the essays shed new light on some key aspects of the political, cultural, religious and economic relationships between the Balkans and more western regions of Europe in the Middle Ages.

ANTONIO SENNIS is Senior Lecturer in Medieval History at University College London Contributors: John H. Arnold, Peter Biller, Caterina Bruschi, David d'Avray, Jörg Feuchter, Bernard Hamilton, R.I. Moore, Mark Gregory Pegg, Rebecca Rist, Lucy J. Sackville, Antonio Sennis, Claire Taylor, Julien Théry-Astruc, Yuri Stoyanov
"New methodological approaches have been opened up and existing narratives and conclusions completely reevaluated. . . . [I]t does indeed seems appropriate to say goodbye to the 'Cathars' and 'Catharism' as they have up to now been known historically." SPECULUM
"This important collection of essays addresses a fundamental question." JOURNAL OF ECCLESIASTICAL HISTORY
"An enjoyable and stimulating read. This is a volume that is indispensable for historians of medieval heresy, but its sharp focus on important methodological questions ensures that there is much of interest here for historians beyond this field." JOURNAL OF RELIGIOUS HISTORY, LITERATURE AND CULTURE
"[A] rich and thought-provoking collection." FRENCH HISTORY

Paperback

9781903153819

June 2018

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Hardcover

9781903153680

August 2016

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9781782048176

August 2016

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Title Details

341 Pages

2.34 x 1.56 cm

Series: Heresy and Inquisition in the Middle Ages

Imprint: York Medieval Press