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The Jesuits in the Entourage of the Radziwiłł Family of Nieśwież in the 18th Century. Social and Cultural Role of the Colleges in Nieśwież and Słuck

Andrea Mariani

Abstract

This doctoral thesis analyzes the contacts between the Jesuit Order and the Radziwiłłs, one of the most influent families of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. By focusing on the relationship between an important part of the clergy and nobility, the dissertation fits into the tradition of research on Polish society in Early Modern Age. Special attention is given to the strategies applied by the Society of Jesus in order to reach its own goals within the specific social and cultural context of the eastern territories of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. From the one hand the enculturation process allowed the Jesuits to influence the religious views as well as the cultural formation of the aristocrats, which was an important aspect of “refashioning” Catholicism in the aftermath of the Trent Council. On the other, according to the expectations of their benefactors, the Jesuits had to maintain a great degree of flexibility in applying the rules of the religious Order as well as undertaking tasks which were not strictly linked with the original goals of their religious community. As far as the first aspect is concerned, it turns out that the Radziwiłłs interfered with the administration of the Order, and in particular with the choice of religious personnel. Among the activities unrelated to the Order’s mission one should mention the granting of credit as well as adding splendor to both family and public ceremonies organized by the magnates. In accomplishing these tasks the Jesuits pursued their own aims. Meeting the requests of benefactors in administrative matters was seen as necessary to ensure their protection to the Order, which contributed to increase the achievements within religious ministries. By idealizing the life and deeds of the members of the aristocratic family the Jesuits not only fulfilled the political ambitions of their benefactors, but also presented to the public the image of pious Christian and honest citizen, which was part of the moralizing and pedagogic effort of the Order.
Record ID
UAMceb0344d57fe4b329865125426835ea1
Diploma type
Doctor of Philosophy
Author
Title in Polish
Jezuici w kręgu Radziwiłłów nieświeskich w XVIII wieku. Społeczna i kulturowa rola kolegiów w Nieświeżu i w Słucku
Title in English
The Jesuits in the Entourage of the Radziwiłł Family of Nieśwież in the 18th Century. Social and Cultural Role of the Colleges in Nieśwież and Słuck
Language
pol (pl) Polish
Certifying Unit
Faculty of History (FoH)
Discipline
history / (humanities) / (humanities)
Scientific discipline (2.0)
1.3 history
Status
Finished
Defense Date
16-10-2015
Title date
16-10-2015
Supervisor
Maciej Serwański Maciej Serwański,, to_translate_Wydział Historii [nowa struktura organizacyjna] (SNH/WH)Szkoła Nauk Humanistycznych [nowa struktura organizacyjna] (SNH)
URL
http://hdl.handle.net/10593/13942 Opening in a new tab
Keywords in English
Society of Jesus, Polish-Lithuanian aristocracy, Great Duchy of Lithuania, Reform of the Catholic Church, Enculturation
Abstract in English
This doctoral thesis analyzes the contacts between the Jesuit Order and the Radziwiłłs, one of the most influent families of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. By focusing on the relationship between an important part of the clergy and nobility, the dissertation fits into the tradition of research on Polish society in Early Modern Age. Special attention is given to the strategies applied by the Society of Jesus in order to reach its own goals within the specific social and cultural context of the eastern territories of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. From the one hand the enculturation process allowed the Jesuits to influence the religious views as well as the cultural formation of the aristocrats, which was an important aspect of “refashioning” Catholicism in the aftermath of the Trent Council. On the other, according to the expectations of their benefactors, the Jesuits had to maintain a great degree of flexibility in applying the rules of the religious Order as well as undertaking tasks which were not strictly linked with the original goals of their religious community. As far as the first aspect is concerned, it turns out that the Radziwiłłs interfered with the administration of the Order, and in particular with the choice of religious personnel. Among the activities unrelated to the Order’s mission one should mention the granting of credit as well as adding splendor to both family and public ceremonies organized by the magnates. In accomplishing these tasks the Jesuits pursued their own aims. Meeting the requests of benefactors in administrative matters was seen as necessary to ensure their protection to the Order, which contributed to increase the achievements within religious ministries. By idealizing the life and deeds of the members of the aristocratic family the Jesuits not only fulfilled the political ambitions of their benefactors, but also presented to the public the image of pious Christian and honest citizen, which was part of the moralizing and pedagogic effort of the Order.

Uniform Resource Identifier
https://researchportal.amu.edu.pl/info/phd/UAMceb0344d57fe4b329865125426835ea1/
URN
urn:amu-prod:UAMceb0344d57fe4b329865125426835ea1

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