Contents Acknowledgments Popes During the Great Schism Maps Introduction 1. A Twelfth-Century Prelude: Hildegard of Bingen, Elisabeth of Schoenau, John of Salisbury, and the Schism of 1159 2. Saints and Visionaries I: From the 1360s to the Beginnings of the Schism 3. Saints and Visionaries II: The Later Schism Years 4. Poetic Visions of the Great Schism I: Philippe de Mezieres and Eustache Deschamps 5. Poetic Visions of the Great Schism II: Honore Bovet and Christine de Pizan 6. Prophets of the Great Schism Conclusion Bibliography Index
Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski is Professor of French at the University of Pittsburgh. Her books include Not of Woman Born: Representations of Caesarean Birth in Medieval and Renaissance Culture (1990) and Reading Myth: Classical Mythology and Its Interpretations in Medieval French Literature (1997).
"Many scholars have claimed that the two principal kinds of medieval visions, the 'experience-based' religious and the 'literary-poetic' ones have to be examined together, but up to this moment no such analysis has been done. With an impressive tour de force and a smart, enjoyable narrative, Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski examines the common motifs and the peculiar metaphors of saintly, prophetic, and poetic visionaries during the period of the Great Schism. This specific context also allows her the exploration of the different lobbies and pressure groups promoting and using those visions. It also gives an opportunity for a witty, incisive analysis, reaching back to the experiences of a previous schism in the twelfth century, with Hildegard of Bingen and Elisabeth Schï¿½nau taking stands on it, and then going into details with Birgitta of Sweden, Catherine of Siena, Philippe de Mï¿½ziï¿½res, Christine de Pizan, and several other fascinating prophets, visionaries, mystics, and poets, exploring the limits of our imaginary. This book is the first to analyze this ensemble together, and its perspicacious observations will be the starting point of any future research on this subject." --Gabor Klaniczay, Central European University "This engaging book will satisfy any academic or layperson interested in the history of the Church, but also in the history of mentalities at large. The book is well-written and comprehensive on many levels." --Joï¿½lle Rollo-Koster, Canadian Journal of History "This well-researched and lively read will delight enthusiasts of medieval French literature. Its pace accelerates as it reaches its conclusion, leaving the reader wanting more." --Jennifer Anne Morrissey, French Review "This book is provided with a genealogy of popes, with maps having excellent legends, fourteen illustrations, a good bibliography . . . and an index. The author's style is leisurely and reads well. Poets, Saints, and Visionaries certainly belongs in university libraries and will profit students and teachers of the late Middle Ages and of Church history." --Edelgard E. DuBruck, Fifteenth-Century Studies "[This book] is an excellent complement to our general knowledge of the schism in that it provides an intelligent reading of authors who are often overlooked in this context. The illustrations are particularly well chosen, and the bibliography gratifyingly full." --F. Donald Logan, Religion and the Arts "Blumenfeld-Kosinski's choice to focus on the imaginaire of the Great Schism is extremely productive; since the book focuses so extensively on visions and prophecies, one might even say it is an inspired choice. One of the most fascinating dimensions of her approach is the way in which it enables exploration of concepts and images across generic boundaries. Her book offers a fresh perspective on a rich period as well as some extremely well-known medieval writers." --Nancy Bradley Warren, Spiritus "Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski tells the story of the Great Schism not as a political or ecclesiastical event, but rather as a disturbing crisis profoundly felt by ordinary Christians at all levels of society. Her innovation is to focus on what she calls 'the imaginaire, ' emotional responses to the division of Christendom expressed in visions, letters, poetry, prophecies, and artistic representations. Blumenfeld-Kosinski writes with a real sympathy for her subjects, who emerge as flesh-and-blood humans struggling to make sense of a profound crisis that threatens to undermine their faith in the clergy. No book more vividly tells the story of the Great Schism or brings together a more fascinating set of characters and texts from the period. I can think of no finer introduction to the workings of the minds of medieval people than Poets, Saints, and Visionaries." --Laura Ackerman Smoller, University of Arkansas at Little Rock "Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski writes with a real sympathy for her subjects, who emerge as flesh-and-blood humans struggling to make sense of a profound crisis that threatens to undermine their faith in the clergy. No book more vividly tells the story of the Great Schism or brings together a more fascinating set of characters and texts from the period. I can think of no finer introduction to the workings of the minds of medieval people than Poets, Saints, and Visionaries." --Laura Ackerman Smoller, University of Arkansas at Little Rock