Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Jerry Maguire Goes Medieval

So, I've been listening to a very interesting* audiobook. It is A Distant Mirror by Barbara Tuchman, of Guns of August fame. While Guns of August focuses on World War I, A Distant Mirror is an ingenious telling of the history of Western Europe in the 14th century.

Because Tuchman uses a narrative format, I find her books to be much easier to get through and so much more interesting. I also think that the narrative format allows the reader to more easily consider historical context than a straight reference book. (That is, events do not happen in a vacuum. There are many causes to single events and it is important for the reader to consider such things.)

In any event, I was listening to the book this morning at a section on Sint Birgitta of Sweden and St. Catherine of Siena. Both women were remarkable in their outspoken criticism of the corruption within the Catholic Church. I can't remember now, but it was Bridget or Catherine who wrote that the problem with the Church was that the cardinals concentrated on who could "bringeth forth the money."

And I thought Jerry Maguire was original! Smilies

*Very interesting, that is, to people who are obsessed with history like I am.

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