Conclusion: A Discourse of Fear Engendered by the Rise of Roman Catholicism in Mid-nineteenth-century England

  • Diana Peschier


The above passage taken from a nineteenth-century novel indicates the various arenas of a discourse of fear of Roman Catholicism that underpinned much of the anti-Catholic writing of the time: the incarceration of men and women in religious houses, the ‘theft’ of property and money by Catholic priests and the power of the Roman clergy over English women and girls. Much anti-Catholic writing of the time was specifically gendered and the authors of this particular genre of nineteenth-century literature not only employed current historical concerns in their work but also made use of contemporary interest in women’s mental health and masculine insecurity concerning their women.


English Woman Catholic Priest Contemporary Interest Catholic Theologian Religious Rhetoric 
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© Diana Peschier 2005

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  • Diana Peschier

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