Shadows of Doubt: Language and Truth in Post-Reformation by Stefania Tutino PDF

By Stefania Tutino

In a compelling exam of the hermeneutical and epistemological anxieties gripping either the early smooth and our present international, Stefania Tutino exhibits that post-Reformation Catholicism didn't easily herald modernity, yet postmodernity besides. This deft learn presents new perception into and a clean point of view at the context of the Protestant Reformation and the Catholic reaction to it.
Shadows of Doubt offers a set of case-studies established at the dating among language, the reality of fellows, and the reality of theology. each one of these case-studies light up little-known figures within the historical past of early smooth Catholicism. whereas the militant points of post-Tridentine Catholicism may be preferred by means of learning figures similar to Robert Bellarmine or Cesare Baronio, who have been the cast pillars of the highbrow and theological constitution of the Church of Rome, an figuring out of the extra fragile and shadowy features of early modernity calls for an exploration of the demimonde of post-Reformation Catholicism. Tutino examines the thinkers whom few students point out and less learn, demonstrating that post-Reformation Catholicism was once no longer easily a global of good certainties to be against the Protestant falsehoods, but additionally an international within which the strong fact of theology existed along and contributed to a few a long way much less reliable truths about the global of fellows. Post-Reformation Catholic tradition used to be not just eager about articulating and putting forward absolute truths, but in addition with exploring and negotiating the complicated hyperlinks among simple task and uncertainty.
By bringing to mild this interesting and hitherto principally unexamined facet of post-Tridentine Catholicism, Tutino finds that post-Reformation Catholic tradition used to be a colourful laboratory for plenty of of the problems that we are facing this present day: it was once an international of fractures and fractured truths which we, with a heightened sensitivity to discrepancies and discontinuities, at the moment are well-suited to appreciate.

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Additional info for Shadows of Doubt: Language and Truth in Post-Reformation Catholic Culture

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Indd 17 29-10-2013 13:42:25 18 SHADOWS OF DOUBT between a speaker and a hearer rather than simply a form of adoration of God through an internal correspondence (or lack thereof) between the hearer’s thought and tongue. The second element to be singled out is the fact that Soto’s elaboration on language is morally neutral. While Soto started his discussion with the morally charged example of the confessor asked to break the confessional seal, his reflections on the built-in ambiguous meaning of the verb scire transcended questions of both morality and motive, so much so that, as Soto argued, even men justly questioned can take advantage of the specific semantic ambiguity of the expressions “scio” or “nescio,” just as those rightly entitled to keep their secrets are obliged to reveal them in case the question was posed in such a way as to preclude the use of those expressions.

62 Such vexing problems provoked a series of relatively public and potentially dangerous controversies within the Catholic camp. One of the most dramatic of those controversies centered on Thomas Bell, a Catholic seminary priest and missionary. In a manuscript work entitled “A comfortable advertisement to afflicted Catholics,” Bell argued that recusancy was a work of supererogation and, as such, it could not be imposed on ordinary men and women, for whom attending Protestant services should be allowed since such attendance, far from being a sort of theological badge of identity, was simply a means to show one’s political loyalty.

One of the women involved confessed the fact to another Jesuit father, Diego Hernández, who then informed Marcén; the Jesuit superior ordered Hernández to absolve the woman without denouncing either her or Briviesca to the Inquisition, thus keeping the entire affair secret. Hernández, however, troubled by his scruples, decided to ignore his superior’s orders and informed the Inquisition, which then proceeded to the arrests. The ensuing trial was an incredibly tense affair, which at times pitted the Inquisitor General of Spain Gaspar de Quiroga, Pope Sixtus V, and Philip II against one another.

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