Authority and Asceticism from Augustine to Gregory the Great

Hardcover | November 1, 2000

byConrad Leyser

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Conrad Leyser examines the formation of the Christian ascetic tradition in the western Roman Empire during the period of the barbarian invasions, c.400-600. In an aggressively competitive political context, one of the most articulate claims to power was made, paradoxically, by men who hadrenounced 'the world', committing themselves to a life of spiritual discipline in the hope of gaining entry to an otherworldly kingdom. Often dismissed as mere fanaticism or open hypocrisy, the language of ascetic authority, Conrad Leyser shows, was both carefully honed and well understood in thelate Roman and early medieval Mediterranean. Dr Leyser charts the development of this new moral rhetoric by abbots, teachers, and bishops from the time of Augustine of Hippo to that of St Benedict and Gregory the Great.

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Conrad Leyser examines the formation of the Christian ascetic tradition in the western Roman Empire during the period of the barbarian invasions, c.400-600. In an aggressively competitive political context, one of the most articulate claims to power was made, paradoxically, by men who hadrenounced 'the world', committing themselves to ...

Conrad Leyser is at the University of Manchester.

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Format:HardcoverPublished:November 1, 2000Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198208685

ISBN - 13:9780198208686

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`L.'s approach and his conclusions represent a subtle departure from traditional studies of this period. His use of discourse analysis and the examinatiion of authority through discourse offer new perspectives for interpreting the frequently dismissed language of the ascetic community.'Theological Studies, vol.62, no.4