14 Chapters
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9 Spain’s Mystical Adventure: Walking in the Footsteps of Teresa of Ávila

McIntosh, I.S.; Quinn, E.M.; Keely, V. CABI PDF

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Spain’s Mystical Adventure: Walking in the Footsteps of Teresa of Ávila

Mary Farrelly*

University College Dublin (UCD), Dublin, Ireland

While promoting Huellas de Teresa, a new pilgrimage route opening in October 2014 to commemorate the fifth centenary of Teresa of Ávila’s birth, Spain’s Interior Minister Jorge Fernando Díaz remarked that he felt sure the saint, ‘from above, where she has great power’, would ensure the success of the project just as she was interceding for Spain during these ‘tough times’. The minister’s comments sparked controversy concerning Spain’s increasingly blurred lines between church and state and reignited the tension between the country’s dual traditions of mystic spirituality and institutionalized religion. Indeed, Teresa’s journey has always been one that traces the lines of intersection between these planes. The interior voyage mapped out in her literary work and her physical journeys around Spain as a foundress of convents combine to produce a uniquely dynamic sacred geography, equipped to shift between planes of metaphorical, physical and virtual experience. However, for nearly 40 years the Francoist regime laid claim to both her literary work and the Discalced Carmelite convents that will now form the main attractions along this new route, robbing Teresa’s mystical landscape of its polysemic value in order to assimilate it into a more politically useful, monophonic national narrative. Focusing particularly on filmic representations of the Teresian journey, this chapter considers the new Huellas de Teresa tour in the context of the many attempts to restore semantic dynamism and mystic vitality to the Teresian journey since Spain’s transition to democracy.

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7 Children’s Processions to Glasnevin: Contestation, Education, Recreation

McIntosh, I.S.; Quinn, E.M.; Keely, V. CABI PDF

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Children’s Processions to Glasnevin:

Contestation, Education, Recreation

Vivienne Keely*

Diocese of Parramatta, Sydney, Australia

Throughout the ages children participated in processions which were an integrated element of pilgrimage. Some processions included children as part of the general population of participants or spectators while other pilgrimage processions were designed specifically for them. Drawing on insights from the philosophy of place, emotional geography and anthropology, this chapter is a case study of a late 19th-century procession for schoolchildren in

Dublin which reveals a fledging network of schools established to counter proselytism in the inner city. Tickets to a procession in the leafy suburb of Glasnevin were a coveted reward for impoverished inner-city schoolchildren enabling them to have a day out in an area of the city where the natural beauty of the pilgrimage site contrasted sharply with the squalid conditions of the slums of the Coombe. The pilgrimage to Glasnevin represents a temporary exodus from the contested spaces of the Coombe to a place where the Roman Catholic affiliation of the child pilgrims could be celebrated in tranquillity and enjoyment. Indeed enjoyment was an intended outcome rather than an unanticipated result of the procession, which is all the more remarkable given the Jansenist tendencies of the prevailing spirituality of the period. The procession functioned as a medium of socialization, enfolding the children in the relatedness of place, which served to reinforce their Roman Catholic identity in a highly charged climate of proselytism. Ordered in hierarchical ranks, the procession both reflected and imposed order within an ecclesial framework. Dialogue with other contributors in this volume shows the conceptual congruence between certain philosophies of place and the anthropological understanding of meshworks. The pronounced sensory elements of the Glasnevin procession – sight, hearing, smell and touch – were deployed to engage the whole person in the religious experience. Thus we are enabled to expand the notion of dreamscape to include knowledge mediated by sensory experience.

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5 Medieval Pilgrims in Modern Times: Buñuel’s The Milky Way

McIntosh, I.S.; Quinn, E.M.; Keely, V. CABI PDF

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Medieval Pilgrims in Modern Times:

Buñuel’s The Milky Way

Alison T. Smith*

The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina,

Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Luis Buñuel’s surrealist film The Milky Way (1969) is posited as a modern pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, and it is most often evaluated according to its thematic content or its filmic structure. The film follows two modern pilgrims, Pierre and Jean, as they make their way from Paris to Santiago. Grounded in surrealist film-making practices, the plot ignores conventions of time and space, and the protagonists inexplicably travel across centuries and continents. The film uses the pilgrimage motif as a means of highlighting and examining the principal heresies of the Catholic faith, and the pilgrims Pierre and Jean at times appear to be of peripheral importance as these weighty themes are explored. Pierre and Jean are far from superfluous, however, and although they appear to be quite average 20th-century men, they are in fact emblematic of the pilgrims of the Middle Ages in certain ways.

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8 ‘Non-Sacred’ No More: The Pilgrimage Path Crucán na bPáiste and the Re-evaluation of Irish Cultural Practices

McIntosh, I.S.; Quinn, E.M.; Keely, V. CABI PDF

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‘Non-Sacred’ No More: The Pilgrimage

Path Crucán na bPáiste and the

Re-evaluation of Irish Cultural Practices

E. Moore Quinn*

College of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA 

In Ireland, cillíní (‘mini cemeteries’ or ‘angel plots’) were designated as ‘non-sacred’ places where infants and young children who had died without baptism were laid to rest. Since Medieval times, these ‘holy angels’ were denied burial in Roman Catholic cemeteries. Not having been properly baptized, the Church insisted they had no rights to sacred burial. Since the mid-1990s, a reconsideration of this position has surfaced, and in certain places, pilgrimages to cillíní have been undertaken in order to restore dignity to those whose familial loss was aggravated by Church fiat. In certain places, ‘non-sacred’ graves have been opened and their remains reinterred in family plots. In County Mayo, a place called Crucán na bPáiste (The Burial Place of the Children) typifies how one community made its cillín sacred. Boundaries were demarcated and a walkway created. A plaque highlighting the site’s significance was erected, and a song by the same name in the Irish language was published on YouTube©.

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4 Pilgrim Writers in Dialogue

McIntosh, I.S.; Quinn, E.M.; Keely, V. CABI PDF

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Pilgrim Writers in Dialogue

Suzanne van der Beek*

Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands

Since the end of the last century, the Camino to Santiago de Compostela has become one of the most prominent manifestations of contemporary Western pilgrimage. The rapid increase in pilgrim numbers has led to a rapidly increasing number of pilgrim narratives. These stories, both on and by pilgrims, provide an interesting insight into the ideas and experiences of the modern pilgrim, for they touch upon a great variety of different themes that play a role in the making of a pilgrimage. What is more, the popularization of the internet has provided pilgrims with new forms of private and public storytelling. These techniques have not only increased the number of narratives that are produced, but they have also created a platform for a variety of different writers who create their narratives with different objectives in mind. The present chapter aims to structure the fast-growing body of pilgrim narratives by identifying three types of pilgrim writers: (i) the personal; (ii) the institutional; and (iii) the forgotten. This typology will be based upon the different relations that pilgrim writers have with the narratives they produce. However, as the chapter will show, no writer is the complete master of their own stories, and all three types of writer remain in a constant, deliberate dialogue with their fellow writers. The dynamics of this dialogue are lively and creative and form an important element in the construction of contemporary pilgrimage.

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