Sunday, October 27, 2013

Inquisitors of Languedoc

From Medievalists:
Among these is the rich mass of documentation relating to the inquisition of heretical depravity in Languedoc in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. This material, spanning a period of well over a century, lets us to see how reactions to the inquisitors changed over time. The evidence shows a distinct pattern of learning and adjustment by the people of Languedoc. When the inquisition was first founded, its procedures and personnel were in a state of flux. It was a new, unpredictable player in the political arena. How best to deal with it was anything but clear. What we see is an often flailing pattern of responses that betrays confusion, an often astonishing naïveté, and resort to large-scale defiance and open violence, much of it counterproductive. As the inquisition perfected its processes and became a regular part of the socio-political landscape, however, people learned how to adjust to it. Responses to it became more sophisticated — and perhaps more effective. Some people, including those who had passed through the investigatory and punitive machinery of the inquisitors, learned how to “colonize” the inquisition, using it to accomplish their own ends. (Read more.)

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