Ancias/Anxiousness in Joana de Jesus (1617-1681): Historical and philosophical approaches

Serrado, J., 2014, [S.l.]: [S.n.]. 227 p.

Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

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  • Joana Serrado
Does fear enable or unable action? Could the writings of a 17th century Portuguese religious woman contribute to the emergence of a subjectivity that empowers women and intellectual production?

In my PhD thesis I conducted a multilayered study on Joana de Jesus, a Cistercian nun who lived in Portugal in two convents and wrote about her daily life, the divine encounters she had with Christ and the knowledge she acquired through those mystical contacts. Joana de Jesus’s teachings were deeply influenced by Rhine mysticism, Modern Devotio and Spanish Golden mystics such as Luis de Granada and Teresa de Ávila. From these traditions she developed the notion of ‘ancias’, which I translated as ‘anxiousness’. A close reading of Joana de Jesus’ shows how anxiousness is a source of intellectual empowerment and religious leadership in her community.
Her anxiousness is a human and divine attribute: it is a yearning for true imitation of Christ, physically and spiritually. Joana’s anxiousness leads to a true, scriptural and devotional knowledge of life and community, sharing in God’s divine wisdom, which allows her emergence of a subject – usually seen as an anomaly in Western philosophy. In the thesis I confront Joana’s notion of anxiousness with two schools of contemporary philosophy, first canonic feministphilosophy (De Beauvoir and Irigaray) about the design of a female subject and secondly to the Portuguese philosophy of saudade, which like Joana de Jesus’s concentrates on yearning as a constituent of subjectivity.
Translated title of the contributionVurige Vreze bij Joana de Jesus (1617-1681): Historische en filosofische benaderingen
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Baar, de, Mirjam, Supervisor
  • Dijk, van, Mathilde, Co-supervisor
  • Berlis, A.K.H. (Angela), Assessment committee, External person
  • Montoya, Alicia, Assessment committee
  • Slob, Wouter, Supervisor
Award date11-Dec-2014
Place of Publication[S.l.]
Print ISBNs978-90-367-7504-5
Electronic ISBNs978-90-367-7505-2
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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