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Defining ideology in the Pontificate of Gregory VII

Tivey, Michael Richard (2012)
M.Phil. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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This thesis explores the definition of ideology in the pontificate of Gregory VII (1073-1085) and in the reform movement which bears his name. The indeterminacy of historiographical notions of ‘Gregorian ideology’ is problematic. As a concept theorised in political science, ideology harbours a variety of connotations and meanings such that its generic use leaves important theoretical questions unanswered. Yet, in seeking to apply a theoretical definition, it is quickly apparent that the diversity of conceptual formulations grouped under the umbrella of ideology precludes any single, universally accepted definition of the term. Testing Gregorian reform for a concept of ideology therefore necessitates the prior definition of the concept itself. As a result, this thesis is as much an exercise in modelling a concept of ideology as seeking to address a historiographical ambiguity. The state of the question is this: can a definition of ideology be construed to theoretically prove or disprove a concept of ‘Gregorian ideology’? When coupled with the nature of Gregorian reform as one of the most complex aspects of Church history, defining ideology becomes an especially ambitious undertaking. The following analysis offers a discussion of how a theoretical concept can be applied to the sources.

Type of Work:M.Phil. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Swanson, Robert Norman
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
Department:Department of Medieval History
Subjects:B Philosophy (General)
BR Christianity
D111 Medieval History
JA Political science (General)
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:3301
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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