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August 05, 2005

The Devils of Loudun

Undoubtedly, The Devils of Loudun owed something of its réclame to its "interdisciplinary" construction. It is a history book that can't be bothered with dates. It is a work of completely undocumented sociology, backed up by Huxley's credit alone. It is a non-fiction novel that also expounds metaphysical philosophies. If I neglect to mention demonic possession, that's only because the author doesn't believe that it actually occurred. He doesn't to believe that there was ever any good reason to believe that it occurred. It's the fact that the case for possession was able to proceed without solid evidence that interests him. I believe that the book is going to be reissued this fall, but only in England. I wonder what sort of an impression it will make, if any.

In the summer of 1634, Urbain Grandier, a Jesuit-trained parish priest, was burned in the town of Loudun for having arranged the demonic possession of a convent of Ursuline nuns.

Continue reading about The Devils of Loudun at Portico.

Posted by pourover at August 5, 2005 12:00 AM

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