Changing Hearts

Performing Jesuit Emotions between Europe, Asia, and the Americas


This volume of essays contributes to our understanding of the ways in which the Jesuits employed emotions to “change hearts”—that is, convert or reform—both in Europe and in the overseas missions. The early modern Society of Jesus excited and channeled emotion through sacred oratory, Latin poetry, plays, operas, art, and architecture; it inflamed young men with holy desire to die for their faith in foreign lands; its missionaries initiated dialogue with and ‘accommodated’ to non-European cultural and emotional regimes. The early modern Jesuits conducted, in all senses of the word, much of the emotional energy of their times. As such, they provide a compelling focus for research into the links between rhetoric and emotion, performance and devotion, from the sixteenth through eighteenth centuries.

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Professor Yasmin Haskell, FAHA, is Cassamarca Foundation Chair of Latin Humanism at the University of Western Australia, Perth, and a Partner Investigator in the ARC Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions: Europe, 1100-1800.

Raphaële Garrod is Associate Professor of early modern French and a fellow of Magdalen College at the University of Oxford, UK. She was a postdoctoral researcher and remains an associate member of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions. She works at the intersection of early modern French literature and intellectual history from the mid-sixteenth to the mid-seventeenth century.
“a very interesting volume unified by the examination of the way the emotions were used to make converts or to help Christians make progress in the spiritual life.”

John J. LaRocca, Xavier University. In: The Heythrop Journal, Vol. 61, No. 3 (May 2020), p. 527-528.

“This book offers for the first time a collection of essays that focus with an innovative perspective on (often overlooked) Jesuit sources. A theoretical overview of the history of emotions in a Jesuit context is followed by multiple case-studies examined by the most important scholars in the field. It efficaciously studies the concrete ways in which emotions were used to “change hearts” of early modern people all over the world (while bringing them under the aegis of this Catholic institution), and it will hopefully encourage further studies on this fascinating topic.”

Elisa Frei, Boston College – Università degli Studi di Macerata, in Archivum Historicum Societatis Iesu XC.180, pp.676-678
List of Illustrations
Editorial Note
Jan Bloemendal

Yasmin Haskell and Raphaële Garrod
1 Senecan Catharsis in Nicolas Caussin’s Felicitas (1620): A Case Study in Jesuit Reconfiguration of Affects
Raphaële Garrod
2 Performing the Passions: Pierre Brumoy’s De motibus animi between Didactic and Dramatic Poetry
Yasmin Haskell
3 Passions on the Jesuit Stage: Systems of Affects in Eighteenth-Century Jesuit Theater Poetics
Nienke Tjoelker
4 “In what storms of blood from Christ’s flock is Japan swimming?” Gratia Hosokawa and the Performative Representation of Japanese Martyrdom in Mulier Fortis (1698)
Makoto Harris Takao
5 The Angel and Ameri(c)a: Performing the “New World” in José Manuel Peramás’s De invento Novo Orbe inductoque illuc Christi sacrificio (1777)
Maya Feile Tomes
6 Si potes exemplo moveri, non propiore potes: Emotional Reciprocity in Laurent Le Brun’s Nova Gallia
Peter O’Brien
7 “I began to teach […]”: Emotion and Performance in Isaac Jogues’s Letter to Father Jean Filleau
John Gallucci
8 Performing Emotions at the Canonization of Ignatius of Loyola and Francis Xavier in the Southern Low Countries
Ralph Dekoninck, Maarten Delbeke, Annick Delfosse and Koen Vermeir
9 Jesuits and Music in Guam and the Marianas, 1668–1769
David R.M. Irving
10 Jesuit Visual Preaching and the Stirring of the Emotions in Iberian Popular Missions
Juan Luis González García
11 “Such fragile jewels”: The Emotional Role of Chinese Porcelain in Early Modern Jesuit Missions
Susan Broomhall
Envoi“Don Mancio, Nephew of the King of Hizen”: Echoes of the Japanese Tenshō Mission to Europe in 1585 in the Portrait of Sukemasu Itô by Domenico Tintoretto
Paola Di Rico and Marino Viganò


All interested in Jesuit history, emotions, the links between rhetoric and emotion, performance and devotion.
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