La vanité et la rhétorique de la prédication au XVIIᵉ siècle

Abstract : This research is set within the framework of XVIIth-century preaching during the Edict of Nantes period (1598-1685). It regards the expression of vanity in oratorical works (Catholic and Protestant sermons) as well as pictorial works (Vanitas, altar paintings). These last years, the study of rhetoric opened new paths that are interesting to explore. The issue at thecore of this study is the way the concept of vanity led to a renewal of the rhetoric of preaching in that period. In other words, I will show that for preachers the concept of vanityis both a theological and a literary concern. Thus my approach is to study the characteristics of a form of speech which, while it is heir to ancient conceptions, is also remodeled in order to adapt tonew circumstances that demand necessary reflections about nature and the power of speech as expressed in sermons and in Vanitas. The concept of vanity isnot only evidence of painful anthropological assessments, but is also used as a moral and religious argumentin sermons, while paradoxically generating an aesthetic fascination. I will thus consider moreparticularly the preachers’ favorite themes (death, scorn for the world, penitence) and their speech strategies, as Catholics and as Protestants, in order to study the paradoxes of speeches about vanity.
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Christabelle Thouin-Dieuaide. La vanité et la rhétorique de la prédication au XVIIᵉ siècle. Littératures. Université de Limoges, 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019LIMO0006⟩. ⟨tel-02057724⟩

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