Mary Frances Dorschell, Western University

Associate Professor Brescia University College Modern Languages London, Ontario mdorsche@uwo.ca Office: (519) 432-8353 ext. 28290

Bio/Research

My area of research is Christian Spirituality in late 19th and early 20th century French Literature. I am especially interested in the fictional works of Georges Bernanos whom another French author declared to be the "greatest novelist of his time." Through the numerous characters in his fictiona...

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Bio/Research

My area of research is Christian Spirituality in late 19th and early 20th century French Literature. I am especially interested in the fictional works of Georges Bernanos whom another French author declared to be the "greatest novelist of his time." Through the numerous characters in his fictional world, Bernanos illustrates humanity's need of God in the midst of a society that is becoming more and more dehumanized and materialistic. How is Christian Spirituality present in Bernanos' work? Though many of his novels have priests as heroes, Bernanos was particularly interested in the universal priesthood of all baptized Christians. How do his characters live out their call to universal priesthood? How is joy present in the midst of their suffering? Bernanos was deeply influenced by Carmelite Spirituality. His work shows he was especialy infuenced by the life and writings of Thérèse of Lisieux, "the greatest saint of Modern Times." Her writings in themselves offer an interesting study of how literary themes and techniques can be used as a vehicle for transmitting spirituality.

At present, I am examining the concept of "joy" in two of Bernanos' novels.


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