Session Title

Medieval Sermon Studies IV: Preaching Division in Late Medieval Europe

Sponsoring Organization(s)

International Medieval Sermon Studies Society; Lollard Society

Organizer Name

Michael Van Dussen

Organizer Affiliation

McGill Univ.

Presider Name

Reid S. Weber

Presider Affiliation

Univ. of Central Oklahoma

Paper Title 1

The Case of Self-Serving Catechesis: Jan Hus and His Preaching

Presenter 1 Name

Marcela K. Perett

Presenter 1 Affiliation

North Dakota State Univ.

Paper Title 2

"Hoc pulchrum mendacium": Wycliffite Exempla on Christ the Divine Physician

Presenter 2 Name

Patrick Outhwaite

Presenter 2 Affiliation

McGill Univ.

Start Date

11-5-2019 1:30 PM

Session Location

Schneider 1275

Description

Among the many historical issues for which sermons provide insight, addressing divisions within the Church in terms that were accessible to a diverse audience provides insight into how medieval society identified itself and the Church. Most scholars recognize this, and yet surprisingly few analyses examine how preachers expressed dissent to lay audiences. Whether labeled as reformers or heretics, preachers that challenged general convention are often raided for evidence of heterodox ideas or even “pulpit terrorism.” Yet preachers whom scholars may dismiss as radicals were frequently highly educated and followed well deliberate and grounded philosophies that they distilled for their audiences. Examining the sermons of “heterodox” preachers closely reiterates the knowledge that to them someone else is always the heretic. For late medieval preachers in times of division, it was critical that they defended their dissent with all the authority, logic, and skill required of one following the true path.

This session is designed to generate a dialogue between scholars that often find themselves in parallel sessions, but utilize similar primary sources, theoretical approaches, and thematic content. This session brings together scholars of Wycliffite and Hussite sermons to address challenges of division and anti-fraternalism on the fringes of the late medieval Church. The papers for this session ask new thematic questions within established contexts that have received little attention outside specialized groups of scholars. The narrative of religious reform is a common theme in the history of late medieval Europe; therefore, this session intends to examine the foundational explanations of theological division among the dissenting preachers of Europe. Michael Van Dussen

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May 11th, 1:30 PM

Medieval Sermon Studies IV: Preaching Division in Late Medieval Europe

Schneider 1275

Among the many historical issues for which sermons provide insight, addressing divisions within the Church in terms that were accessible to a diverse audience provides insight into how medieval society identified itself and the Church. Most scholars recognize this, and yet surprisingly few analyses examine how preachers expressed dissent to lay audiences. Whether labeled as reformers or heretics, preachers that challenged general convention are often raided for evidence of heterodox ideas or even “pulpit terrorism.” Yet preachers whom scholars may dismiss as radicals were frequently highly educated and followed well deliberate and grounded philosophies that they distilled for their audiences. Examining the sermons of “heterodox” preachers closely reiterates the knowledge that to them someone else is always the heretic. For late medieval preachers in times of division, it was critical that they defended their dissent with all the authority, logic, and skill required of one following the true path.

This session is designed to generate a dialogue between scholars that often find themselves in parallel sessions, but utilize similar primary sources, theoretical approaches, and thematic content. This session brings together scholars of Wycliffite and Hussite sermons to address challenges of division and anti-fraternalism on the fringes of the late medieval Church. The papers for this session ask new thematic questions within established contexts that have received little attention outside specialized groups of scholars. The narrative of religious reform is a common theme in the history of late medieval Europe; therefore, this session intends to examine the foundational explanations of theological division among the dissenting preachers of Europe. Michael Van Dussen