Demons and the Making of the Monk
Spiritual Combat in Early Christianity
By (author) Professor David Brakke
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Demons and the Making of the Monk by Professor David Brakke
Book DescriptionDemons - whether in embodied form or as inward temptation - make vivid appearances in early Christian monastic literature. In this finely written study of demonology and Christian spirituality in 4th and 5th Century Egypt, David Brakke examines how the conception of the monk as a holy and virtuous being was shaped by the combative encounter with demons. Brakke studies the 'making of the monk' from two perspectives. First, he describes the social and religious identities that monastic authors imagined for the demonfighting monk: the new martyr who fights against the pagan gods, the gnostic who believes he knows both the tricks of the demons and the secrets of God, and the prophet who discerns the hidden presence of Satan even among good Christians. Then he employs recent theoretical ideas about gender and racial stereotyping to interpret accounts of demon encounters, especially those in which demons appear as the Other - as Ethiopians, as women, or as pagan gods. Drawing on biographies of exceptional monks, collections of monastic sayings and stories, letters from ascetic teachers to their disciples, sermons, and community rules, Brakke crafts a compelling picture of the embattled religious celibate. Demons and the Making of the Monk is an insightful and innovative exploration of the development of Christian monasticism.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780674018754
(235mm x 155mm x 27mm)
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 6-Jan-2006
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Professor David Brakke
Selected Discourses of Shenoute the Great, Hardback (December 2015)
English translations of the major works of Shenoute the Great (c.347-465), foundational and controversial figure in Egyptian Christianity.
Gnostics, Paperback (September 2012)
This book offers an illuminating discussion of recent scholarly debates over the concept of 'Gnosticism' and the nature of early Christian diversity.
Shifting Cultural Frontiers in Late Antiquity, Hardback (June 2012)
Explores the transformation of classical culture in late antiquity by studying cultures at the borders - the borders of empires, of social classes, of public and private spaces, of literary genres, of linguistic communities, and of the modern disciplines that study antiquity.
Religion and the Self in Antiquity, Paperback (November 2005)» View all books by Professor David Brakke
Explores the origins, formation, and limits of the self within the religions of the ancient Mediterranean world. This book argues that the history of the self does indeed begin in antiquity, developing as Western religion itself developed.
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Author Biography - Professor David Brakke
David Brakke is Professor of Religious Studies, Indiana University.
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