Die Nonnen Von Padua
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This previously unpublished novel, rediscovered by the author’s son, is a compelling account of the conflicts between city and church authorities in a 15th-century Italian state. The story also highlights the fate of an illegitimate girl born inside a convent, the grotesque behavior of a power-crazed abbess, the lack of confidence of the local bishop, the machinations of the mayor and other dignitaries, and the struggle between conscience and rational thinking of the city doctor. Schreyer also takes the opportunity to include a debate between traditional and forward-looking major artists, and to emphasize the misgivings of the Church faced with an epidemic of the plague. This historical extravaganza reveals Schreyer’s concerns at the end of WWII to redefine the role of the Church and to test various moral codes in an age characterized by uncertainty, cruelty and superstition.
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