Seeing and Being Seen in the Later Medieval World: Optics, Theology and Religious Life

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Cambridge University Press, Apr 28, 2005 - History
During the later Middle Ages people became increasingly obsessed with vision, visual analogies and the possibility of visual error. In this book Dallas Denery addresses the question of what medieval men and women thought it meant to see themselves and others in relation to the world and to God. Exploring the writings of Roger Bacon, Duns Scotus, Peter Aureol and Nicholas of Autrecourt in light of an assortment of popular religious guides for preachers, confessors and penitents, including Peter of Limoges' Treatise on the Moral Eye, he illustrates how the question preoccupied medieval men and women on both an intellectual and practical level. This book offers a unique interdisciplinary examination of the interplay between religious life, perspectivist optics and theology. Denery presents significant new insights into the medieval psyche and conception of the self, ensuring that this book will appeal to historians of medieval science and those of medieval religious life and theology.
 

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Contents

VISION AND VISUAL ANALOGY DURING THE LATER MIDDLE AGES
1
SELF AS SELFPRESENTATION IN EARLY DOMINICAN RELIGIOUS LIFE
19
CONFESSION DECEPTION AND SELFKNOWLEDGE
39
Chapter 3 PETER OF LIMOGES PERSPECTIVIST OPTICS AND THE DISPLACEMENT OF VISION
75
PETER AUREOL ON THE IMPORTANCE OF APPEARANCES
117
NICHOLAS OF AUTRECOURT AND THE FRAGMENTATION OF VISION
137
VISION PROMISE DEFERRAL
169
BIBLIOGRAPHY
181
Index
197
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About the author (2005)

Dallas G. Denery II is Assistant Professor of History at Bowdoin College. He was awarded an NEH Award for Summer 2004 and is a member of the Medieval Association of America.

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