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Abstract

This chapter seeks to demonstrate the usefulness of tracing a particular concept—scandale—through the Genevan consistory records in order to locate conversations, debates, and negotiations that reached beyond the group of elite men who ran the city government and the church. In pursuing that path, this chapter first provides a brief overview of relevant scholarship on Reformation Geneva to demonstrate how scholarly assumptions about the meaning of scandale have obscured our understanding of Reformation dynamics, and especially women’s participation. The discussion then moves to a close examination of several cases in which Genevan women accuse one another of creating scandal in the community. In such situations, when Genevan women applied the label scandalous (or scandalize, or simply scandal) to particular words or behavior, they were actively participating in defining the Reformed community. Whether by accusing someone of creating scandal or refuting the accusation about themselves, these women were discussing and defining acceptable moral and social standards of their community. The cases examined here demonstrate some of the varied ways that Genevans—reformers and laity alike—employed the concept of scandale as they negotiated the shape of their newly reformed community in the mid-1500s.

In: Cultural Shifts and Ritual Transformations in Reformation Europe
In: Dire l’interdit
In: A Companion to Paul in the Reformation
In: Emancipating Calvin
Culture and Confessional Identity in Francophone Reformed Communities
The eleven essays in Emancipating Calvin: Culture and Confessional Identity in Francophone Reformed Communities demonstrate the vitality and variety of early modern Francophone Reformed communities by examining the ways that local contexts shaped the reception and implementation of reforming ideas emanating especially from John Calvin and the Reformed church of Geneva. The articles address three main themes important for understanding the development of Reformed communities: the roles of consistories in Reformed churches and communities, the development of various Reformed cultures, and the ways in which ritual and worship embodied the theology and cultural foundations of Francophone Reformed churches. This Festschrift honors the pioneering work of Raymond Mentzer and reflects his influence in modern Francophone Reformed studies.
In: Emancipating Calvin
In: Emancipating Calvin