Stevin Seminar: Stigmata in the seventeenth century. How a mystical phenomenon became physical
Lecturer: Mònica Balltondre
Abstract: The well-known Spanish Saint Teresa of Avila (1515-1582) talked of a vision she had in ecstasy where she saw an angel piercing her heart. Upon this vision, the Roman Church constructed a mystical phenomenon named the transverberation of the heart. In the context of the reception of her mystical legacy along the 17th century, medical, scientific and also gender discourses played a role. The involvement of the body as the locus of the mystical experiences changed in 17th century. I will discuss which sociohistorical changes could explain the construction of that mystical phenomenon.
Mònica Balltondre is Associate Professor of History of Psychology at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona