The Jesuitesses in the bookshop : Catholic laywomen's participation in the Dutch book trade, 1650-1750
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The institutional Catholic Church in seventeenth-century Amsterdam relied on the work of inspired women who lived under an informal religious rule and called themselves ‘spiritual daughters’. Once the States of Holland banned all public exercise of Catholicism, spiritual daughters leveraged the ambiguity of their religious status to pursue unique roles in their communities as catechists, booksellers and enthusiastic consumers of print. However, their lack of a formal order caused consternation among their Catholic confessors. It also disturbed Reformed authorities in their communities, who branded them ‘Jesuitesses’. Whilst many scholars have documented this tension between inspired daughter and institutional critique, it has yet to be contextualized fully within the literary culture of the Dutch Republic. This article suggests that due to the de-institutionalized status of the spiritual daughters and the discursive print culture that surrounded them, public criticism replaced direct censure by Catholic and Reformed authorities as the primary impediment to their inspired work.
Watson , E 2021 , ' The Jesuitesses in the bookshop : Catholic laywomen's participation in the Dutch book trade, 1650-1750 ' , Studies in Church History , vol. 57 , pp. 163 - 184 . https://doi.org/10.1017/stc.2021.9
Studies in Church History
Copyright © The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of Ecclesiastical History Society. This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the same Creative Commons licence is included and the original work is properly cited. The written permission of Cambridge University Press must be obtained for commercial re-use. doi: 10.1017/stc.2021.9