Tuesday, May 18, 2010
New view of Anne Boleyn
England's The Catholic Herald has published a review of a new book about Anne Boleyn by GW Bernard, Professor of Early Modern History at Southhampton University, titled Anne Boleyn: Fatal Attractions, from Yale University Press. The Herald's reviewer accepts some of Bernard's arguments--that Anne may indeed have been guilty of adultery; that Mark Smeaton was not tortured; that Anne was neither so politically important or supportive of Lutheranism. From the review it sounds like Bernard analyzes her library and concludes it indicates she was thoroughly, conventionally Catholic--which certainly contradicts the thesis of Paul Zahl in Five Women of the English Reformation (a book of slender intellectual pretension). In a way, Bernard's interpretation of Anne sounds more like that of Karen Lindsey in Divorced, Beheaded, Survived: A Feminist Re-Interpretation of the Wives of Henry VIII, in which Anne is the victim of Henry's sexual harrassment. As Alexander Lucie-Smith concludes in his review of Bernard's study: "In his portrait Anne is a frailer and in a strange way rather more likeable figure."
Don't forget that I'll be on the Son Rise Morning Show tomorrow morning at 7:45 am Eastern;6:45 am Central--the Son Rise Morning Show is broadcast from Cincinnati, Ohio on the EWTN radio network.