Men and women throughout history have learned to shape their lives around Christian ideas, attitudes, and values in many different ways. They have been helped by liturgies, sermons, visual imagery, religious drama, and hymns. But perhaps the most important sources were the classic devotional manuals, like The Imitation of Christ and The Pilgrim's Progress, many of which are still in use today.
In this book, Margaret Miles subjects these devotional manuals to a detailed critique. Miles speaks as a scholar, as a Christian living in the modern world, and as a woman, and she ends by discussing the relevance of her findings to Christian life today.
Endorsements & Reviews-
"Dr. Miles rightly highlights the importance of manuals in the spiritual formation of lay people down the ages. Her 'active and disobedient' reading of historical texts which were written for the 'care and cultivation of an interior life' engages the reader in a serious and fascinating study. "In fact she has succeeded in fulfilling every literary critic's dream. She has written a book which sends us straight back to her primary sources by providing richly documented insights into the relevance of the imagery to our contemporary search for God." --Lavinia Byrne, IBVM
Margaret R. Miles
Margart R. Miles was formerly Bussey Professor of Historical Theology at the Harvard University Divinity School. She is the author of 'Augustine on the Body', 'Image as Insight', and 'Carnal Knowing'.