The prerequisite(s) for this Teaching Unit (Unité d’enseignement – UE) for the programmes/courses that offer this Teaching Unit are specified at the end of this sheet.
At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :
By the end of this seminar, the student should be capable of putting the historian's procedure into practice in the context of the documentary and critical study of a precise question in modern history.
The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled “Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit”.
Miracles, cultures and politics: the issues of religion and devotion for the historian.
In the 17th century, the southern Netherlands experienced long periods of war, but also truces allowing the state to reorganize itself around an exhibited Catholicism. Devotion to the Virgin Mary is a major element of this and it is organized around sanctuaries and the miraculous statues they contain. In this context, Marian pilgrimage books flourish (a tool of religious and political propaganda). They retrace the history of a sanctuary as well as that of the miraculous statue of the Virgin Mary, describing her many miracles.
This seminar offers students the opportunity to confront themselves with these religious books written in the 17th century. They will work from books in French and will therefore learn to question them as a major source for early-modern history. How to make these documents speak? What can be found there? It is a matter of appropriating this source and then building one's own research path, grasping the multiplicity of possible historiographical approaches: cultural history, political history, gender history, religious history.
After an introduction on the theme, the students will work in small groups on a dossier. Their work will be presented and discussed collectively and will be the subject of an individual written report.
Teaching: by the lecturer and, in some cases, the assistants assigned by the Department.