Writing Faith and Telling Tales: Literature, Politics, and Religion in the Work of Thomas More

By Kaufman, Peter Iver | The Catholic Historical Review, Summer 2015 | Go to article overview

Writing Faith and Telling Tales: Literature, Politics, and Religion in the Work of Thomas More


Kaufman, Peter Iver, The Catholic Historical Review


Writing Faith and Telling Tales: Literature, Politics, and Religion in the Work of Thomas More. By Thomas Betteridge. [ReFormations Medieval and Early Modern.] (Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press. 2013. Pp. xii, 256. S38.00 paperback. ISBN 978-0-268-02239-6.)

To recover the "traditions within which [St. Thomas] More wrote" (p. 7), Writing Faith slips past its author's interests in Tudor literature to snatch up four- teenth- and fifteenth-century texts. The concerns addressed by More in works ranging from his early epigrams to the polemical and later devotional treatises, Betteridge says, are reflected in works of Geoffrey Chaucer, John Lydgate, William Langland, Reginald Pecock, and others. When Betteridge is at his best, his parallels are striking, and readers will be glad to have his suggestive run at More's telling tales and striking arguments against the early English evangelicals. Yet Writing Faith may often leave readers clamoring for more of the late-medieval context, as when Betteridge sifts the effects of the Peasants' Revolt on the political opinions of Langland and Chaucer.

Betteridge's careful handling of More's polemical works will be especially appreciated. Some of his conclusions lean on James Simpson's work where Brendan Bradshaw's appraisals should have given pause; yet this is a quibble. Writing Faith does an impressive, insightful job with the pragmatism of More's Dialogue Concerning Heresies (1529) and Confutation (1532-33). Betteridge's analysis of the latter accommodates several memorable observations and assessments: "in its sheer size and messiness," Betteridge suggests, More's Confutation "can be seen as an image of [his] church as a place for religious thought" (p. 146). By then, Writing Faith has already set up More's reliance on "the community of the church" in which "religious meaning" is-and ought to be-"constrained" yet also is a conversation that is not always swift to discern "the truth of Christ's teaching" (pp. 141-42). On this front, early evangelicals were guilty first of impatience, then of error. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Writing Faith and Telling Tales: Literature, Politics, and Religion in the Work of Thomas More
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.