©2007 Thomas F. Madden; (P)2007 Recorded Books
While classroom lectures are not as well-read as some of the Times Bestseller fiction novels, the teacher doesn't do a bad job and gives great info on the Inquisition.
Most importantly, one is able to try to understand WHY a sane person would support such a practice. From this vantage point of history, the Inquisitors seem out of their skulls, but I appreciated the professor's lectures precisely because the picture that came through was of rational men taking their beliefs to a logical end. It was enlightening to try to get into their shoes.
The lectures kept me interested. I suspect Dr. Madden is a strong Catholic, but every author and every teacher is biased.
This covers a lot of history, starting with the Roman origins of inquisitions. The lecturer is very well informed though he does seem to go out of his way to defend the church every few minutes. Even so, he presents the history most have never really looked into in a way that's easy to follow and retain.
I like Madden's courses, and this one did not disappoint, however, the history of Inquisition stopped being interesting after the Reformation, although the course touched on the modern misconception of the Inquisition, the course could have been more interesting if it focuses more on the heretical theology.
incredibly, likely willfully naive - the professor thinks that 'heretics' were 'persuaded' of their errors and recanted having realized this. his basic assertion is that unlike the state, the church only sought to correct. he has never heard of Power, as in requiring loyalty oaths to maintain power. church and state were two mutually sustaining parts.
above is based on listening to the audio up to the inquisition - i had to give it up. hoping audible will refund my $.
This lecture, to me, was a big disappointment. Prof. Madden's implied, but not well disguised assertion is that the Catholic Church is inherently right and has no other objectives than to safeguard the spiritual welfare of its believers. Heresy, then, is inherently evil since it could possibly derail the flock from the path of righteousness. Consequently, inquistion is the only logical solution to protect the true and only faith. The heretics are lucky to be protected by the compassion of Canon law. After all, only a few thousand Jews and conversos were executed in Spain. Unfortunately, few historic sources were quoted for these assertions.
But not all is lost. The halting delivery and meagre prose will convince few listeners other than adherents of Opus Dei.
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