Method, reason, war. Catechetical literature for soldiers in the eighteenth century

Journal title SOCIETÀ E STORIA
Author/s Vincenzo Lavenia
Publishing Year 2017 Issue 2016/154 Language Italian
Pages 19 P. 767-785 File size 71 KB
DOI 10.3280/SS2016-154008
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The paper analyzes a number of eighteenth-century texts intended for military chaplains, officers and common soldiers, comparing these books and the ordinances from different countries of Europe, Catholic and Protestant. Starting from the birth of the genre of catechisms for soldiers in the sixteenth century, it shows that after Westphalia, with the establishment of the barracks and a more formalized military discipline, military regulations imbibed the educational impulse of Christian literature for soldiers, while that same literature became more neutral from an ideological point of view, more worldly and more patriotic. Later on, catechesis for the soldiers had to come to terms with the Enlightenment, from which it tried to absorb the more compatible aspects, changing attitudes after the eighties of the eighteenth century as a result of the radicalization of a part of the philosophical culture, the reactionary closure of the Churches and finally the Revolution. It was then that in military catechesis the calls for holy war, abandoned during the eighteenth century, were back.

Keywords: War, Religion, Military discipline, Catechisms, Enlightenment, Revolution.

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Vincenzo Lavenia, Metodo, ragione, guerra. La letteratura catechetica per i soldati nel XVIII secolo in "SOCIETÀ E STORIA " 154/2016, pp 767-785, DOI: 10.3280/SS2016-154008