Anti-Catholicism Has Always Been the Pornography of Protestant Zealots and Sanctimonious Secularists

From the tiresome progressives at HuffPo we have Sex, Mischief And Witches: Dark Side Of Life Discovered In A Medieval Oxford Nunnery. The article puts forth its purported archeological findings in the most oh-so antiseptic and scientistic manner. But the agenda of contemporary anti-Catholicism is ever-present between the lines of the text. It reads like the same scurrilous and salacious attack on Roman Catholic religious found in the Awful Disclosures of Maria Monk, or, The Hidden Secrets of a Nun’s Life in a Convent Exposed, which was published in January 1836. Monk’s book, which was a complete hoax, was published in an American atmosphere of pronounced anti-Catholic hostility (partly fueled by early 19th-century Irish and German Catholic immigration to the U.S.) and followed the 1834 Ursuline Convent Riots near Boston. It was the most popular best-selling book in America next to Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Such lurid Anti-Catholicism has always been the pornography of Protestant zealots and sanctimonious secularists. That hostility, fear, and bigotry had gone back centuries in the making.

Later in the 20th Century, filmmakers carried on these same disingenuous attacks with two movies.

From Wikipedia:

The Devils is a 1971 British historical drama horror film directed by Ken Russell and starring Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave. Russell’s screenplay is based partially on the 1952 book The Devils of Loudun by Aldous Huxley, and partially on the 1960 play The Devils by John Whiting, also based on Huxley’s book. The film is a dramatized historical account of the rise and fall of Urbain Grandier, a 17th-century Roman Catholic priest executed for witchcraft following the supposed possessions in Loudun, France. Reed plays Grandier in the film and Vanessa Redgrave plays a sexually repressed nun who finds herself inadvertently responsible for the accusations.

Agnes of God is a 1985 American film starring Jane Fonda, Anne Bancroft and Meg Tilly, about a novice nun who gives birth and insists that the dead child was the result of a virgin conception. A psychiatrist (Fonda) and the mother superior (Bancroft) of the convent clash during the resulting investigation. It was adapted by John Pielmeier from his own play of the same name, and directed by Norman Jewison. The film was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Actress in a Leading Role (Bancroft), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Tilly) and Best Music, Original Score.


3:11 pm on June 1, 2015

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