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Monastic Reform as ProcessRealities and Representations in Medieval Flanders, 900-1100$
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Steven Vanderputten

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780801451713

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801451713.001.0001

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(p.186) Conclusion
Monastic Reform as Process

Steven Vanderputten

Cornell University Press

This concluding chapter argues that “reform” remains something of a black hole in scholarly discussions of the history of monastic institutions. Like the astronomical phenomenon, the reform of a monastery is often perceived as a single event of huge consequence, which can be used as a reference point to both interpret and evaluate that institution's long-term development. The same applies to the understanding that monastic leadership in the decades following a given reform constituted the implementation of a preconceived reformist program, and to the notion that reform always entailed a rupture with previous disciplinary and institutional realities. This problem can be traced from the fact that that reform functioned as a literary theme, to which notions such as decline, renewal, and reconciliation were central.

Keywords:   reform, monastery, monastic leadership, reconciliation, institutional realities, reformist program

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