Posted - October 4, 2010
Divine visions in medieval literature topic of Eureka College professor’s book
The interpretation of divinely inspired visions in medieval literature is the subject of a book written by a Eureka College assistant professor of English. “Willing to Know God: Dreamers and Visionaries in the Later Middle Ages” by Jessica Barr was published by The Ohio State University Press in September.
The book explores English dream vision poems and medieval women’s visionary texts from the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries. The book suggests these works offer an understanding of the medieval conceptions of knowledge, psychology and the limits of the human mind to perceive and understand the divine.
“Many people claimed to have divinely inspired visions in the Middle Ages, and some of the most beautiful and moving literature we have from this period professes to come from such revelations,” Barr said. “Such visions, however, required the active as well as the passive participation of the visionaries, who must be united with the divine and employ their rational and analytic faculties in order to be transformed by the vision.”
For more information, or to purchase the book, go to www.ohiostatepress.org.
Barr joined the Eureka College faculty in 2007. She received a bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio, and a master’s degree and doctorate, both from Brown University, Providence, R.I.
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