The Habit: A History of the Clothing of Catholic Nuns

The Habit: A History of the Clothing of Catholic Nuns

Elizabeth Kuhns / Feb 17, 2020
The Habit A History of the Clothing of Catholic Nuns Curiosity about nuns and their distinctive clothing is almost as old as Catholicism itself The habit intrigues the religious and the nonreligious alike from medieval maidens to contemporary schoolboy
  • Title: The Habit: A History of the Clothing of Catholic Nuns
  • Author: Elizabeth Kuhns
  • ISBN: 9780385505895
  • Page: 221
  • Format: Paperback
  • Curiosity about nuns and their distinctive clothing is almost as old as Catholicism itself The habit intrigues the religious and the nonreligious alike, from medieval maidens to contemporary schoolboys, to feminists and other social critics The first book to explore the symbolism of this attire, The Habit presents a visual gallery of the diverse forms of religious clothiCuriosity about nuns and their distinctive clothing is almost as old as Catholicism itself The habit intrigues the religious and the nonreligious alike, from medieval maidens to contemporary schoolboys, to feminists and other social critics The first book to explore the symbolism of this attire, The Habit presents a visual gallery of the diverse forms of religious clothing and explains the principles and traditions that inspired them More than just an eye opening study of the symbolic significance of starched wimples, dark dresses, and flowing veils, The Habit is an incisive, engaging portrait of the roles nuns have and do play in the Catholic Church and in ministering to the needs of society.From the clothing seen in an eleventh century monastery to the garb worn by nuns on picket lines during the 1960s, habits have always been designed to convey a specific image or ideal The habits of the Benedictines and the Dominicans, for example, were specifically created to distinguish women who consecrated their lives to God other habits reflected the sisters desire to blend in among the people they served The brown Carmelite habit was rarely seen outside the monastery wall, while the Flying Nun turned the white winged cornette of the Daughters of Charity into a universally recognized icon And when many religious abandoned habits in the 1960s and 70s, it stirred a debate that continues today.Drawing on archival research and personal interviews with nuns all over the United States, Elizabeth Kuhns examines some of the gender and identity issues behind the controversy and brings to light the paradoxes the habit represents For some, it epitomizes oppression and obsolescence for others, it embodies the ultimate beauty and dignity of the vocation.Complete with extraordinary photographs, including images of the nineteenth century nuns silk bonnets to the simple gray dresses of the Sisters of Social Service, this evocative narrative explores the timeless symbolism of the habit and traces its evolution as a visual reflection of the changes in society.
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      Published :2019-05-21T19:49:24+00:00

    About "Elizabeth Kuhns"

      • Elizabeth Kuhns

        Elizabeth Kuhns Is a well-known author, some of his books are a fascination for readers like in the The Habit: A History of the Clothing of Catholic Nuns book, this is one of the most wanted Elizabeth Kuhns author readers around the world.

    549 Comments

    1. Around the time I came across this book there had been a good deal of discussion in the news about a regulation passed in France which would prohibit Muslim girls from wearing headscarves in school In fact, it prohibited the wearing of any identifying religious garb Evidently, the regulation does not apply to parochial or other private schools, but it did bring to mind stories I d hear about France s long history of intolerance with things religious despite the fact it is considered a Christian [...]


    2. A fascinating and well written history of nuns and the evolution and de evolution of the habit, all the notable because of the paucity of books written about religious vestments in general and women s religious vestments in particular and what they mean to their wearers Highly recommended.


    3. Around the Year in 52 Books 2017 Reading Challenge A non fiction book.A history of the Catholic Nuns habit This would have been much better IF there were photos AND the photos were placed in the book with the descriptions The descriptions were difficult to follow imagine without photos or at least diagrams Disappointing.


    4. Did you know that in many orders, every single item of the habit has meaning From the color of a veil to the number of knots in a sash, everything has symbolic meaning, making dressing a kind of moving meditation and prayer.This book explores how various groups of women religious developed their religious dress and how or if they stopped In this post Vatican II world, many women religious have abandoned the habit as old fashioned and an impediment to their interaction with the community they ser [...]


    5. After attending Vespers at my parish, where a group of Dominicans attended and spoke on Mercy led to a conversation with my mother about what kind of nuns had taught her in school because the habits were similar, I became interested in different styles Being in my 30 s, habits aren t something I see everyday to have a basis of comparison Very interesting history It is an older book so it is missing a decade or two of history, but really engaging nonetheless.


    6. Her infrequent use of citation is a big bummer Especially since, you know, it s a history book Sigh.



    7. Can be a bit dry at times, but you won t find a thorough history of the garments of women religious anywhere.


    8. Really informative, but not the most riveting read Did find what I wanted when I set out to read this book Learned a lot about nuns and different orders and habits.


    9. Interesting I m not Catholic, but I definitely ended the book pro habit Why wear boring old street clothes if you don t have to


    10. This would be a good introduction for someone who knows nothing about women s religious orders and their histories Otherwise, I would recommend Sisters In Arms by Jo Ann Kay McNamara.



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