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dc.contributor.authorCels, Marc
dc.descriptionMy paper was included in a session on vices and virtues. Someone questioned if the Dominicans and Franciscans should really be treated together. Given that mendicant authors of manuals borrowed from each other quite freely and that secular authors borrowed from both, the similarities between Franciscan and Dominican friars are pronounced. Moreover, there is considerable variation in the emphasis of each writer, regardless of their affiliation. Audience members were most interested in the Christian teachings about zealous or righteous anger, which, I explained tended to be down-played in pastoral discussions of anger directed at lay people, which were more concerned with distinguishing mortally sinful forms of the vice. Zeal was, nevertheless, sometimes subsumed under “correction” which was often treated under the heading of sloth. Indeed, I am curious if the discourse on righteous correction became more pronounced in the later Middle Ages, when European society was undergoing violent upheavals.en
dc.description.abstractWrath was one of the Seven Deadly Sins, a popular schema for moral instruction and the interrogation of penitents during confession. The emphasis given to either the social or spiritual aspects of the vice can indicate the moral perspective of confessors and the social influence of their discourse. This paper compares a sample of instructions for hearing confessions written by friars to secular several examples from fourteenth-century England. Some scholars have argued that the mendicants’ confessional practice downplayed the communal aspect of sins like anger and that they were less insistent upon using annual Lenten confession to press for restitution and reconciliation than were secular parochial clergy. They also concluded that friars fostered a morality more concerned with interior introspection than social harmony. Although the mendicants’ manuals do not make reconciliation a prerequisite for absolution, they do insist on the restitution and satisfaction demanded by canon law. They also reflect a more abstract interest in the psychology of sin and the effects on the human soul. Nevertheless, mendicant advice for confessors acknowledges the social consequences of anger. The guides for secular clergy tend to be simpler and focus on outward actions of anger, but their advice about wrath also considers the spiritual effects of anger. In short, this essay finds that both religious groups considered anger’s social and spiritual aspects and discussed it using many of the same commonplaces. The paper concludes that successful interpersonal reconciliation and communal peace rested on fostering greater introspection and emotional self-discipline.en
dc.subjectSeven Deadly Sinsen
dc.subjectFourteenth-century Englanden
dc.subjectParochial Clergyen
dc.titleConfessing Anger in the Late Middle Agesen

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