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The Perfect Jesuit de Furio Monicelli
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The Perfect Jesuit (edição: 2001)

de Furio Monicelli

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The beliefs and practices surrounding the meanings and symbols of the spirit world in Vietnam are explored in detail in this study on popular religion in the country. The author shows an abiding interest in the subconscious life at a grassroots level, alongside rational formations of cosmological understanding which effect politics and economics on a national scale. By bringing together oral histories, reports and fiction writing alongside more conventional documented sources, this book reveals an area of history which has been largely neglected.… (mais)
Membro:jayeff
Título:The Perfect Jesuit
Autores:Furio Monicelli
Informação:Penguin Books Ltd (2001), Paperback, 144 pages
Coleções:Lendo atualmente (inactive)
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The Perfect Jesuit de Furio Monicelli

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  Murtra | Jul 23, 2021 |
In order to write this novel Monicelli was inspired by his experience of the Jesuit novitiate - see https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Furio_Monicelli One therefore has to believe that maybe the details are accurate for a certain time and place in Italy.

There is a kind of timelessness about this novel as the world is kept completely at bay. One is unsure when it is set except that there are buses and there are lights in the novitiate.

The three main characters Andrea, Zanna and Lodovici are all Jesuit novices. They are a kind of trinity of which only the main character Andrea goes through to making his vows. In that he is triumphant just as Christ triumphed over sin and death on the Cross. Lodovici is perhaps the Good Thief and Zanna the Bad ?? Maybe Zanna is a portrait of Monicelli himself.

Is it I wonder a novel about Monicelli's conviction that the Jesuit order is a deception? As Andrea leaves for Rome, the Master tells him 'And you have demonstrated manliness in distancing yourself from every natural link with other creatures.' p.130. Whereas in fact Andrea seems to have loved Lodovici (Marco) and the Master is therefore deceived.

This is not an easy read and time and time again I found myself re-reading sentences to try to understand what they were saying.

On the morning of his final vows Andrea goes for a walk and finds a weeping nun in a church. Is she weeping for herself, for her vocation, for her church? - just as Andrea cries the morning he leaves the Novitiate. The Rector says 'when they [tears] are the outcome of noble conflicts, tears are never useless' p.129. Maybe Andrea has had a noble conflict but this is not known by the Rector.

The illness suffered by Marco and description of the rotting flesh is not believable even in the Jesuit situation. The fact that no-one seemed to be treating him even in a rudimentary way doesn't add up. Maybe Monicelli is again trying to show how cruel this way of life was.

I found the reference to Daniel Seghers - the Dutch Jesuit flower painter interesting even more so when I saw that there was a painting of St Ignatius (founder of the Jesuit order) with Seghers flower garland around it. Is this dichotomy and the author's reference to the painter another sub-text? ( )
  louis69 | Jul 23, 2017 |
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The beliefs and practices surrounding the meanings and symbols of the spirit world in Vietnam are explored in detail in this study on popular religion in the country. The author shows an abiding interest in the subconscious life at a grassroots level, alongside rational formations of cosmological understanding which effect politics and economics on a national scale. By bringing together oral histories, reports and fiction writing alongside more conventional documented sources, this book reveals an area of history which has been largely neglected.

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