Suicide in the Middle Ages: Volume 2: The Curse on Self-Murder

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9780198207313: Suicide in the Middle Ages: Volume 2: The Curse on Self-Murder

The second volume in a three-part series, The Curse of Self-Murder explores the origins of the condemnation of suicide and provides a unique perspective on medieval culture and religion.

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About the Author:

Alexander Murray is at University College, Oxford.

Review:

`this is a book which richly repays the effort spent following the author through the staggering range of material deployed here ... It is this range of sources which allows Murray to argue confidently and persuasively that the hostility to self-killing which can be observed in the medieval
West was not imposed by the Christian Church, but has far deeper and more complex roots.'
Rosemary Horrox, Mortality, 6:1, 2001

`This is not only an extraordinarily learned book; it is the subtle and controlled handling of the sources that gives the narrative its authority ... Its scale and ambition make much intellectual history seem superficial.'
Margaret Atkins, The Tablet, 7 April 2001

`Murray is telling us about far more than suicide itself ... His concern to understand and unravel the transmission of beliefs, traditions and processes of thought amounts to a prolonged meditation on teh nature of medieval evidence, and how to read it.'
Andrew Jotischky, Social History Society

`We could hope for no better guide.'
Margaret Atkins, The Tablet, 7 April 2001

`Murray is telling us about far more than suicide itself. His concern to understand and unravel the transmission of beliefs, traditions and processes of thought amounts to a prolonged meditation on the nature of medieval evidence, and how to read it.'
Andrew Jotischky, Social History Society

`this strange and compelling book'
Andrew Jotischky, Social History Society

`a lively discussion of practices ... Monumental, wide-ranging and valuable, this is a work of extensive and impressive scholarship.'
Robert Swandon, TLS 26.01.01.

`This is history on the exhaustive scale. It will become the definitive study almost as a by-product.'
Contemporary Review, Dec. 2000.

`writing in an engaging, rather avuncular style, addressing the reader directly, expounding his methods and conclusions as he goes along, with elegance and as much humour as the subject permits ... this gem of historical research provokes, as the best history should, thoughts well beyond its
own boundaries.'
Spectator

`going far beyond the rather impressionistic treatments of earlier scholars.'
Michael Goodich, American Historical Review, April 2000.

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