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I read this book as research for a novel I m writing, with particular interest in the legend of Mary Magdalene s life in France This book does an amazing job of bringing all the information about Mary Magdalene together paired with a sober view The author does not push her views on anyone, nor does she draw farfetched conclusions She just describes how Mary Magdalene has been portrayed in art, literature, and religious sects through the ages, starting from the gospels and the letters of Paul, until the 1990s, when the book was written It s a no nonsense approach that will satisfy anyone who is looking to delve deeper into the myths and metaphors around the amazing Mary Magdalene. The night before my wedding, I had a dream about Mary Magdalene I was sleeping over at the home of one of my bridesmaids, a devout Catholic and one of my best friends.When I woke up in the morning, I saw this book on a bookshelf I hadn t seen the night before I told her my story of synchronicity and she told me that her spiritual director has said to her that when you see that beam of light, you should step into it So I borrowed the book It s a cultural history book masquerading as an art history book It is illustrated with depictions of La Magdalene from medieval times to the nearly present I was especially interested in the way that artists co opted i.e., exploited her as a way to create erotic art during a time of censorship I get it but it saddens me that her true story is obscured and subverted by art that gets the whole message completely backwards The message to which I refer That Mary Magdalene was freed by Jesus from exploitation by men I was most excited by the chapter describing ministries to prostitutes and sex slaves in Europe that were named for Magdalene and took her as patron saint.As for the writing, you get what you pay for it s an academic book and reads as such You wouldn t mistake it for pop lit, but it s accessible and mostly steers clear of jargon and academese I suspect art history writing in general is less egregious than lit crit, which I say with love as a literary critic theorist Sadly, though, the book goes off the rails at the end when the author tries to conclude with a thesis she hasn t earned in any way It read as though she had turned in her final draft and the editor was like, Good, good but what is the point So she tacked on a conclusion that she wished she had brought up before but it s already the deadline and oh, well, who is going to argue when the point is clearly just that people made art about Mary Magdalene in ways that reflected themselves than her See, there s your ending What does ordaining women have to do with what I just read, pray tell This book would have only gotten 3 stars were it not for the fact that when I stepped into that beam, it led me all the way into the church and a deeper relationship with God Mysterious ways, indeed All you didn t know about the mysterious woman in Jesus life. interesting story.Different prospective on Mary Magdalenworth rfeading My fingers brushed the spine of this book at the library many weeks ago, and I felt like I had to read it After finishing, I don t feel incredibly enlightened, but maybe the understanding for the need to read this will come to me soon.This was very interesting I actually couldn t put it down once I got going A little repetitive and very dense at times, yet over all a very informative and interesting biography.I m glad I read it, as I know now than I did before And isn t that the point of reading This is the definitive work on everything Mary Magdalene Hey, how can you go wrong with a 600 page book where half the page count is devoted to footnotes Remarkable for its depth, covering everything known from biblical times all the way to the present, and touching on everything from the New Testament to Modern Art it is subtitled Myth and Metaphor , after all A great reference, and fascinating in parts, overall it does suffer somewhat in readability There are better written books out there on the woman that founded Christianity, but none this detailed just know what you are getting into before you tackle this one. |READ EPUB ♞ Mary Magdalen: Myth and Metaphor ☿ Using evidence from early Christian writings the art literature of nearly , years, the author shows how Mary Magdalen merged with other figures in the New Testament until she came to epitomize the condition of women in the Church in society BW illus An interesting attempt to first, sort out all the multitudinous Mary s in the gospels And then, explore the various different myths surrounding the Magdalene, along with what political ends these different myths served when they were formed In addition, the author explores some of the beautiful art exploring the Magdalene legend. I had trouble getting into this book, even though the subject matter was interesting. General overview of the life of a devout woman Not my favorite, but I appreciated her life