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Bernadette of Lourdes Her Life, Death and Visions

by Therese Taylor

Bernadette of Lourdes Her Life, Death and Visions Synopsis

This is the first ever scholarly biography of Bernadette Soubirous, either in French or in English. It draws upon many testimonies and archival sources that have never previously been published. Bernadette of Lourdes: Her Life, Death and Visions is the first ever scholarly biography of Bernadette Soubirous, either in French or in English. It draws upon many testimonies and archival sources that have never previously been published. Therese Taylor explains who Bernadette was, and how she lived and died but takes no position on whether or not her visions were genuine. This story begins in Bernadette's native country of the Pyrenees, a mountain region haunted by tales of fairies, witches and miraculous groves and springs. It follows Bernadette's astonishing life story, from her family circle, through her years of fame, to her retirement at the convent of St Gildard at Nevers. Her difficult relationships with the historians of Lourdes and her lengthy terminal illness are also considered.This biography places Bernadette in the context of her time. She was born into a volatile family and her parent's lives were blighted by economic failure and alcoholism. At the age of fourteen Bernadettewas an illiterate child-servant, who suddenly experienced a series of visions of a White Lady in the Grotto of Massabielle. Townspeople, government officials, clergy and journalists were all drawn in and sought out Bernadette in order to assess her story. A chain of events was set off which made her one of the most famous women in France. Bernadette has to be understood not only in religious terms, but also with reference to themes such as tourism, commercialism, mass-representation and the exploitation of female celebrities.

Bernadette of Lourdes Her Life, Death and Visions Press Reviews

'Taylor's excellent biography offers a fascinating look at Bernadette's short and in many ways tragic life. The book thus offers not only a vivid portrait of a remarkable young woman, but fascinating insights into the interactions between official and popular religion. Taylor does not take a stand on the veracity of Bernadette's visions, and her tone is balance enough to appeal to sceptics and believers alike. The book is well researched and written in elegant prose refreshingly free of scholarly jargon. This must-read for scholars' of French religious history and/or the history of women is accessible for undergraduates and general readers as well. Essential. All libraries/levels' Choice

Book Information

ISBN: 9780826420855
Publication date: 18th September 2008
Author: Therese Taylor
Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd. an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 304 pages
Categories: Christian theology, Biography: general,

About Therese Taylor

Dr. Therese Taylor is a Lecturer in Modern History at Charles Sturt University, Australia. She has written articles on many topics, including the history of medicine, religion, and crime.

More About Therese Taylor

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