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Giordano Bruno: Philosopher / Heretic Paperback – September 1, 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
Rowland spends a good deal of her book examining Bruno's writings rather than his behavior. If one wants a biography of juicy gossip, one had better look elsewhere. The burden of Rowland's account is to explicate and contextualize Bruno's many publications. Rowland's claim, with which I thoroughly concur, is that Bruno was one of the greatest "literary" figures of his epoch, a writer whose books still have the power to amuse and engross readers.Read more ›
On a purely informational level, there is a lot here. Rowland shared a number of anecdotes about Bruno's life which have stuck in my mind: his getting caught with a forbidden book in the latrine, the mockery of his high-flown rhetorical style by the English, his own fondness for mockery and cursing even in the prisons of the Inquisition.
But more telling than the individual anecdotes are the larger ideas that span Bruno's life story. I was particularly fascinated by his expertise in memorization techniques. In a time when books and writing ability were rare, the ability to memorize vast amounts of information was an important skill. Bruno, apparently, was highly prized as a teacher of his own memorization technique which allowed him to make a living during his years as a wanderer across Europe.
And, of course, there was the development of his philosophical ideas. He is probably best known for developing the idea of an infinite universe where the stars could be individual solar systems with their own planets. This alone had implication with his ultimate conflict with the Church. But he also asserted theological ideas that were clearly heretical in the eyes of Christianity, such as that Christ committed a mortal sin in the Garden of Gethsemane.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I consider this book a beautifully crafted valentine to the life and work of Giordano Bruno (1548-1600). Why should you care? Read morePublished 12 months ago by Douglas Bass
Ingrid Rowland has an excellent style of storytelling. The text is very informative and engaging. It is the most accessible biography of Giordano Bruno I have come across so far.Published 15 months ago by Paul
Bruno was a slightly crazy, itinerant crank who seemed to annoy almost everyone. Sure he had a few good ideas. The following wasn't one of them. Read morePublished 15 months ago by The Pie Face Prince
Great book, at a great price. I think it's a must read! Very enlightening.Published 19 months ago by Nimue
An important critical review of this book, written by a well recognized scholar of the Early Modern period of Christianity, should be read by all potential buyers: [...]Published 23 months ago by Perry C. Turchi
I may not have the academic background to appreciate this work but I found it very difficult to follow. Read morePublished on August 25, 2013 by Curmudgeon
It is unfortuante that the world seems to have forgotten one of its great figures, one who dared to think in modern ways. Read morePublished on July 29, 2013 by John Schilke